First law to recognise victims of Franco passed

31st October 2007, Comments 0 comments

31 October 2007, MADRID - (AFP) - Spain's parliament approved Wednesday a law that for the first time officially recognizes the victims of the 1936-39 civil war and the ensuing dictatorship of General Francisco Franco.

31 October 2007

MADRID - (AFP) - Spain's parliament approved Wednesday a law that for the first time officially recognizes the victims of the 1936-39 civil war and the ensuing dictatorship of General Francisco Franco.

The Law of Historical Memory was backed by the ruling Socialists and a number of smaller parties, but opposed by the main opposition conservative Popular Party.

Socialist Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, whose grandfather was executed as Franco's Nationalist forces took control of northern Spain in 1936, had made the controversial law a centerpiece of his first term in office.

The law declares "illegitimate" the verdicts of the summary trials that Franco's regime held against people suspected of opposing it. That ruling paves the way for sentences to be declared null.

It also require statues, plaques and other symbols of Franco's regime to be removed from public buildings.

Its passage approval comes after months of negotiations and ahead of a general election in March 2008.

The PP, which grew partly out of Francoist roots, had opposed the draft law on the grounds that it opened old wounds and was divisive.

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Subject: Spanish news

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