Spain election winner Rajoy vows to 'battle' crisis
Spain's election winner Mariano Rajoy vowed to lead a "battle against the crisis" ravaging the country's economy, after near-complete results gave his party its biggest ever victory on Sunday.
"Forty-six million Spaniards are going to wage a battle against the crisis," he told a sea of cheering supporters from a balcony outside his Popular Party's headquarters in Madrid, where he jumped for joy as he proclaimed victory.
Voters handed the ruling Socialists their biggest defeat in history, chasing them from seven years in office in which an economic boom went bust and the unemployment rate shot to 21.5 percent.
"I will govern in the service of Spain and the Spanish people," Rajoy said, promising to make "an effort by all and for all".
"The work that lies ahead us will not be easy, but I want you to know I am convinced that with the help of everyone we will move forward and Spain will be where we all want it to be -- at the head of Europe."
"I am fully determined to be the prime minister of all and always to put the general interest before any individual interest," said Rajoy, who now faces pressure to reassure investors that Spain can pay its debts.
He vowed to fight "the deficit, excessive debt and economic stagnation, and everything that keeps this country in critical circumstances".
"We are facing a decisive moment for Spain."
© 2011 AFP