The leaders of the Socialist Party and Podemos talked for two hours on Wednesday in a highly anticipated meeting aimed at unblocking Spain’s political deadlock.
Although Pedro Sánchez and Pablo Iglesias walked into the meeting with no plans to yield on their respective positions, the head of Podemos revealed at the end of their talks that he was willing to give up on holding a post in any cabinet that might emerge from a coalition government.
I am ready to yield. There’s no more excuses. Now it’s the Socialist Party’s turn to make concessions Pablo Iglesias
However, he added that he would only do so in the event that Sánchez breaks his deal with Ciudadanos – the other emerging party to do well at the inconclusive December 20 elections, which yielded a hung parliament – and opts to explore a leftist coalition with Podemos, United Left and Compromís.
“I am ready to yield,” said Iglesias. “There’s no more excuses. Now it’s the Socialist Party’s turn to make concessions.”
Until now, Iglesias had been proposing a scheme in which Sánchez would be the prime minister and the Podemos leader his deputy.
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For his part, the Socialist leader has until now refused to break his partnership with Ciudadanos.
But Podemos has repeatedly said that it will not enter into any alliance with Ciudadanos – which seems to feel the same way about the anti-austerity party.
The “governing pact” recently signed by the Socialists and Ciudadanos, which together hold 130 deputies in Congress, has so far failed to attract enough support to attain the 176 seats required for an overall majority.
Iglesias made a reference to this pact following his meeting with Sánchez.
“Perhaps it does not work as a governing agreement, as has been demonstrated, but it might work to get Ciudadanos to facilitate an investiture deal and prevent the Popular Party from remaining in power,” he said.
If parties fail to strike any deals between now and May 2, parliament will be dissolved and new elections called for late June.
English version by Susana Urra.