Sunday, September 14, 2008

Divided opinion

Just over half of the readers of Vegabajadigital agree with the Socialist party in Orihuela that the names of any streets which bear reference to Francisco Franco should be changed.

A third of the readers said the names should remain and the rest thought that politicians should spend their time and effort on more important things.

La Ley de Memoria Histórica, which condemned the Francoist regime, was passed on 31st October last year.

The main provisions of the law are:

  • Recognition of the victims of political, religious and ideological violence on both sides of the Spanish Civil War and of Franco's regime.
  • Condemnation of the Francoist regime
  • Prohibition of political events at the Valley of the Fallen - Franco's burial place.
  • The removal of francoist symbols from public buildings and spaces. Exceptions may be given for artistic or architectural reasons, or in the case of religious spaces.
  • State help in the tracing, identification and eventual exhumation of victims of Francoist repression whose corpses are still missing, often buried in mass graves.
  • The granting of Spanish nationality to surviving members of the International Brigades, without requiring them to renounce their own nationalities.
  • Rejection of the legitimacy of laws passed and trials conducted by the Francoist regime.
  • Temporary change to Spanish nationality law, granting the right of return and de origen citizenship to those who left Spain under Franco for political or economic reasons, and their descendants.
  • Provision of aid to the victims and descendants of victims of the Civil War and the Francoist regime.

The PP party criticised this law which they say only opens up old wounds.

It's hard to imagine how changing the names of streets would help erase the memory of what happened.

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