Podemos party leader and candidate Teresa Rodríguez  after the Andalusian regional elections, in Seville, southern Spain, on Sunday.  Photograph: Jon Nazca/Reuters

Podemos wins 15 seats in regional poll as Socialists claim ‘historic’ win

Andalusia’s regional government president and Socialist Party candidate Susana Díaz at an election campaign rally in Alcala de Guadaira on March 17th. Photograph: Marcelo Del Pozo/Reuters

The Socialist Party has ruled Andalusia since 1982, but its reign may be coming to an end

Banco Madrid kept the doors of its branches closed on Monday as it emerged the lender had ceased all financial operations and requested a creditors’ meeting. Photograph: Andrea Comas/Reuters

Crisis exacerbated by recent run on reserves as clients withdraw money

Juan Salazar and Jose Salazar of Los Chunguitos, who feature in an episode of  Los Gipsy Kings. Photograph: Europa Press/Europa Press via Getty Images

A reality show is drawing plenty of viewers but is accused of stereotyping

Spainish prime minister Mariano Rajoy: “We’re not responsible for the frustration of the Greek radical left, which promised what it could not deliver, as has been made clear.” Photograph: Andrea Comas/Reuters

Pushing unpopular austerity policies since 2011 leaves little sympathy in Spain and Portugal

Shoppers  in central Madrid: Spain’s economy grew  throughout 2014,  outstripping most forecasts. Photograph: Susana Vera/Reuters

GDP grew 0.7% in fourth quarter of last year, the biggest quarterly increase since 2008, data shows

Juan Carlos Monedero,  third-in-command of Spanish anti-austerity party Podemos, during a press conference in Madrid. Mr Monedero described a controversy over payments he received from from the Venezuelan, Bolivian, Ecuadorian and Nicaraguan governments as a ‘government set up’. Photograph: Javier Soriano/AFP/Getty Images

Spanish anti-austerity party defends payment to key member from left-wing governments

Anti-abortion protesters rally in Madrid  last year. Some believe the proposed reforms are too timid. Photograph: Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images

Main change requires under-18s to have parental consent

Podemos leader Pablo Iglesias: aims to roll back austerity Spain has been implementing for the last five years. PIerre-Philippe Marcou/AFP/Getty Images

Podemos at top of polls, seven points ahead of Popular Party due to 'shift in European politics'

A unit of the new highspeed train built by Spanish manufacturer Talgo is loaded onto a freighter in Barcelona’s port bound for Jeddah City in Saudi Arabia. The Medina-Mecca rail link is plagued by delays, political tensions and technical headaches. Photograph: Josep Lago/AFP/Getty Images

Finishing the Medina-Mecca rail link proving to be very problematic for Spanish firms

Podemos supporters at Puerta del Sol square: Saturday’s event was unusual in that it made no specific demands of the government. Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images

Anti-austerity party leader tells crowd, ‘We are going to beat the PP in the elections’

 Tourists and local people meet near Plaza Mayor, the famous central market place which dates back to the 15th century, in Madrid Photograph: EyesWideOpen/Getty Images

Everything starts later here and keeps going later

Looking up: things have improved since Iberia workers protested in Madrid in 2013. photograph: denis doyle/getty images

Spanish airline Iberia looks set to post its first net annual profit in six years

The remains of a coffin with ‘M.C.’ on it are displayed on a table in the crypt of Madrid’s Las Trinitarias convent. The coffin was found during a search for the remains of Don Quixote author Miguel de Cervantes. Photograph: Madrid City Hall/Sociedad Aranzadi/Reuters

Search for Don Quixote author’s remains led team to coffin under convent floor

Pablo Iglesias, leader of Podemos, has become a close ally of Alexis Tsipras. Photograph: Aris Messinisaris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images

Pablo Iglesias, leader of Podemos, has become a close ally of Alexis Tsipras

A government-run employment office in Madrid. Over the last 12 months, 434,000 jobs were generated, bringing the overall unemployment rate in Spain down to 23.7 per cent. Photograph: Andrea Comas/Reuters

Country finally starting to emerge from labour market crisis

Catalan premier Artur Mas, of the nationalist Convergence and Union  coalition, has brought forward the next election of the region’s parliament to September 27th. Photograph: David Ramos/Bloomberg

Ballot in September is seen as step towards full independence from Spain

 A Muslim protester holds a placard  during a demonstration  in Madrid against the recent Paris terrorist attacks. Photograph:   Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images

New ID card has serious purpose of making Spain safer

What makes a Spanish omlette? Unlike many other countries, Spain does not have a standardised test for those seeking to be naturalised. Photograph: Jose R Aguirre/Cover/Getty Images

Applicants vetted and asked questions by a judge, who then decides if they qualify

Portugal’s economy minister António Pires de Lima. Photograph: Patricia de Melo Moreira/AFP/Getty Images

Police involved as allegations of fraud are made against the phone company

The people have been arrested in Lanzarote in connection with an investigation into a smuggling and money laundering ring. Photograph: Getty

Man and woman reportedly held over suspected smuggling and money laundering

Farmer Jacinto Serranos with a calf that has been killed by a wolf.  “I can’t sleep at night, I’m always on tenterhooks, wondering if the wolves are going to attack.”

Spain’s protected wolves are heading south and causing havoc for livestock farmers

Mariano Rajoy: so-called transparency portal is the flagship project of  the prime minister’s new transparency law. Photograph: Pau Barrena/Bloomberg

Database will show salaries of public figures, and detail donations, contracts and subsidies

A portrait of Federico García Lorca hangs from a wall in a restaurant near the site where archeologists are searching for a mass grave of victims of the Spanish Civil War in Alfacar, near Granada. Photograph: Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images

Historians believe they have solved mystery of last resting place of Spain’s celebrated poet

Supporters hold up a Catalan independence flag during a conference in Barcelona on Tuesday called  after a symbolic vote on the region’s independence from Spain. Photograph: Gustau Nacarino/Reuters

President aims to run on a united platform with other pro-independence parties

A television screen grab of 85-year-old Carmen Martínez  in her neighbourhood of Vallecas in Madrid. Spanish first division soccer club Rayo Vallecano is to help Ms Martínez, who was evicted on  November 21st from her house in Vallecas, where had lived there for 50 years. Photograph:  EPA/EFE TV

Rayo Vallecano’s staff steps in after 85-year-old is evicted over son’s debt

Pope Francis telephoned the alleged victim of sex abuse by several priests and asked him to “forgive this extremely serious sin”. Photograph: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Granada archbishop to explain failure to act over suspected abusive priests

 Spanish prime minister Mariano Rajoy speaks about the recent unofficial Catalonian independence poll  in Madrid yesterday. Photograph:  Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Spanish PM refuses to cede ground despite overwhelming vote in favour of secession

Pro-independence supporters celebrate the results of the informal poll for the independence of Catalonia in Barcelona, Spain, on Sunday.Photograph: AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti

Turnout for unofficial referendum hints at appetite for more formal action

Volunteers count ballots after the closing of a polling station yesterday in Barcelona. Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images

Overwhelming win expected for pro-independence side in low turnout vote

Spanish nun Teresa Forcades, who has become an increasingly prominent European intellectual. Photograph: Lluis Gene/AFP/Getty Images

In the past, Teresa Forcades’s views have drawn Vatican reprimands

Rodrigo Rato leaving the High Court after being questioned by a judge investigating the alleged use of credit cards for personal expenses. Photograph: Sergio Perez

Close ties with the political and financial classes sealed the financier’s fate – with jail now a very real possibility

President of Catalonia Artur Mas (left) with leader of the Pro-Independence political party Esquerra Republicana de Catalunya Oriol Junqueras, leaving the Catalan government building in Barcelona, Spain, this week. Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images

Surging pro-independence leader outflanks moderate rival Mas as tension with Madrid increases

Spaniards protest against corruption after 51 people are arrested as part of an investigation involving local government contracts. Photograph: Sergio Perez/Reuters

Politicians, businesspeople and civil servants implicated in investigation

Working on a replica of the Altamira caves. Photograph: Luis Davilla/Cover/Getty Images

Scientific council says regular visits to Altamira caves could damage wall paintings

The objective is the same, to hold a referendum, but in a different way, says the president of Catalonia Artur Mas. Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images

A banned vote on independence to be held next month has been cancelled

The Spanish high court is investigating the credit cards, which were given out by Caja Madrid savings bank and Bankia, the lender that absorbed it in 2010, and they were not registered in official accounts.

String of public figures forced to resign in fallout from crisis

Health workers protest in Madrid over the Spanish government’s handling of the Ebola infection. Photograph: Denis Doyle/Getty Images.

What can the world learn from Spain’s experience with the deadly virus?

Health workers protest outside Madrid’s La Paz Hospital, calling for Spain’s health minister, Ana Mato, to resign. Photograph: Andrea Comas/Reuters

Doctors told patient to remain at home when she reported symptoms of fever

Credit cards issued by Spanish savings bank Caja Madrid.

Up to €15.5m allegedly spent by senior figures, some of it on clothes and travel

Balconies are decorated with “estelada” flags, that symbolises Catalonia’s independence, and a banner encouraging people to vote for a referendum in Catalonia, in Barcelona, Spain. Photograph: AP Photo

Court decision to accept Spanish appeal against referendum has led to its automatic suspension

Pro-independence supporters display banners reading “Live free or die”and “We are a nation” in front of the Palau de la Generalitat in Barcelona. Photograph: Gustau Nacarino/Reuters

Catalonia’s non-binding independence referendum may be derailed by courts

Mariano Rajoy: said a lack of consensus forced withdrawal of the abortion law reform. Photograph: Chema Moya/EPA

Spanish PM scraps deeply unpopular reform that would have tightened abortion law

Catalan leader Artur Mas said staging of the referendum itself had been a triumph that Spain should let Catalonia emulate. Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images

Rajoy says Scottish people made right choice but Artur Mas admits result is setback

 Demonstrators march during a pro-independence demonstration as part of the celebrations of the National Day of Catalonia in Barcelona yesterday Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images

Day marked 300th anniversary of loss of sovereignty to Spain

A Catalan flag flutters above Barcelona’s Mercat de Born. Today’s Diada, or Catalan national day, marks the anniversary of city’s  defeat of 1714 during the War of Succession. Photograph: Josep Lago/AFP

The Spanish state has deemed a type of ‘referendum’ to be illegal

A file picture of Ana Patricia Botin, new boss at the bank. Photograph: EPA

Ana Patricia Botin was approved as the new boss of bank

A protester holds up a sign reading ‘Out with binge tourism’ at a demonstration in Barcelona. Photograph: EPA/Marta Perez

Residents in parts of city angry over noisy tourists and offensive behaviour

Catalan president Artur Mas. Newspapers El País and El Mundo reported yesterday that Mr Mas and his Convergència i Unió coalition could delay the Catalan independence referendum if the Spanish constitutional court rules it illegal, as is widely expected. Photograph: Reuters/Gustau Nacarino

Fear that turnout could be adversely affected if court, as expected, rules vote is illegal

Vitoria in northern Spain, pictured earlier in August at the start of its annual festival.  Photograph: Adrian Ruiz de Hierro/EPA

Javier Maroto accused of stirring up tensions by saying North Africans abuse system

Relatives of imprisoned members of ETA  take part in a march in Bilbao last year demanding the transfer of prisoners to the Basque country. The placard reads: “Basque prisoners in the Basque country.” Photograph: Getty Images

Violence has ended but reconciliation still a long way off

 Former   president of Catalonia Jordi Pujol: was found to be hiding a secret fortune he had harboured money from his father’s inheritance in tax havens for 34 years. Photograph: EPA/David Borrat

Former regional president Jordi Pujol admits to hiding inheritance in tax havens

Demonstrators with the pro-independence Catalan National Assembly hold a giant banner with an image of US president Barack Obama at Plana square in Badalona, near Barcelona. Photograph: Gustau Nacarino/Reuters

Alarm at lack of political discussion between sides on Catalan question

Pedro Sánchez: won 49 per cent of the votes cast by 130,000 party members in the Spanish Socialist Party leadership contest. Photograph: Reuters/Javier Barbancho

Sánchez, until recently a relative unknown, vows to unseat conservative government

General Francisco Franco (second from right) and his wife Doña Carmen Polo are saluted at a reception at Burgos. Photograph: Keystone/Getty Images

The parador in León does not advertise the fact that, during the civil war, it was a concentration camp for leftist Republicans

Outgoing leader Alfredo Pérez: one of many senior PSOE figures who have held posts within the party since the early years of Spain’s democratic era. Photograph: Reuters/Andrea Comas

The two leading candidates, Madina and Sánchez, offer generational change

“Those with deposits have reason to have every confidence in the security that Banco Espírito Santo offers their savings,” Portuguese prime minister  Pedro Passos Coelho said yesterday. Photograph: Reuters

Trading in Banco Espírito Santo shares suspended after fall of 17% on Thursday

The pro-choice march in Madrid which features in the film. Photograph: Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images

Documentary aims to raise awareness about abortion restrictions

Gowex CEO and founder Jenaro Garcia resigned after admitting he presented fictitious accounts

Gowex opened bankruptcy proceedings after CEO admitted falsifying company results

The Gowex bubble started to burst on June 1st, when US-based investment company Gotham City Research issued a report for its clients in which it warned the Spanish firm’s results were “too good to be true”. Photograph: EPA/Diego Garcia

Falsification of results raises doubts about efficiency of market regulation in Spain

Princess Cristina, the sister of Spain’s newly installed King Felipe VI, has been formally named as a suspect in a corruption investigation

Sister of new king named as suspect in corruption investigation

In December, the conservative Popular Party  of prime minister Mariano Rajoy unveiled the first version of the Abortion Bill. Photograph: Andrea Comas/Reuters

Newspaper says planned law would now allow termination if foetus is malformed

King Felipe VI of Spain and Queen Letizia of Spain with daughters Princess Leonor and Princess Sofia  leave the Congress of Deputies during the King’s official coronation ceremony in Madrid yesterday. Photograph: Andreas Rentz/Getty Images

Felipe appears to reach out to citizens in regions seeking independence

Gardeners plant flowers at Gran Via in Madrid yesterday as Spanish flags hang from lampposts in preparation for Prince Felipe’s coronation. Photograph: Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images

Day of ceremonies and celebrations to attempt balance between pomp and austerity

A man suspected of belonging to an international Jihadist recruiting network sits in a police car in Madrid yesterday. Photograph:  Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

Network leader had been detained in Guantánamo Bay and released for lack of evidence, says ministry

Stamps depicting Spain’s Prince Felipe as future king are covered with gum for keychains at a factory in Colmenar Viejo. Photograph: Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

On his accession the new king must make himself useful to the country

King Juan Carlos of Spain and his son Felipe arrive for a military ceremony of the San Hermenegildo order held at the monastery of San Lorenzo de El Escorial on the outskirts of Madrid yesterday. Photograph: EPA/Ballesteros

Elevation of Prince Felipe to throne expected later this month

Spain’s King Juan Carlos makes a televised speech yesterday  in the Zarzuela Palace in Madrid announcing his abdication. Photograph: AP

Challenge for successor Prince Felipe is to restore credibility of monarchy

Four bankers found guilty of financial crimes. Photograph: iStockPhoto

Jail terms were cut after defendants agreed to give back €28.6m

Pablo Iglesias: political scientist heads new party that won 1.2 million votes. Photograph: Andrea Comas/Reuters

Party operates on tiny budget but is fuelled by outrage

From left: Spanish artist Tomeu Lamo, Spanish art expert Carmen Sandalinas Linares, French Dali expert Nicolas Descharnes and Spanish art expert Jose Pedro Venzal Placido pose next to Salvador Dali’s “The Intrautirine Birth of Salvador Dali” during its presentation in Madrid. Photograph: Gerard Julien/AFP/Getty Images

‘The Intra-Uterine Birth of Salvador Dalí’ depicts painter’s creative birth

Spanish prime minister Mariano Rajoy: called Miguel Arias Cañete “far and away the best candidate”

Conservative candidate claims he underperformed in TV debate because rival was a woman

Raimon: “I’m not pro-independence because I’ve never really thought about it”. Photograph:  Lluis Gene/AFP/Getty Images

Symbol of rebellion Raimon triggers debate about freedom of speech

The economic crisis, which has seen Spain suffer two recessions and brought it to the brink of requesting a full sovereign bailout, has dented the country’s pro-Europe sentiment. Photograph: AP Photo/Andres Kudacki

Frustration and anger expected to be vented in European elections

People look at drawings of  Antonio Machado and Federico Garcia Lorca – their fate during the Spanish Civil War has been glossed over in a school book. Photograph: Anne-Christine Poujoulat/AFP/Getty

Study book for six-year-olds omits mention of poet’s violent death at hands of Franco supporters

 Barcelona’s Dani Alves: has received huge support for his reaction to banana throwing incident, but says little has happened in Spanish football to tackle racism. Photorgraph:  Peter Byrne/PA Wire.

Recurring issue of racism in Spanish game comes sharply into focus

Catalan premier Artur Mas. Reuters/Gustau Nacarino

Whether binding or not, November’s poll will gauge separatist views, says Catalan leader

Ibrahim, from Ivory Coast: “We’ve got it into our heads that we have to get to Europe, however difficult that might be.” Photograph: Guy Hedgecoe

From all over Africa, people try to scale fences into Spanish enclaves in Morocco

Catalan separatist flags seen hung beside a banner from a balcony in Barcelona yesterday. REUTERS/Albert Gea

Nationalists insist they will push ahead with independence campaign and referendum

Spain’s Prince Felipe (right) toasts with Catalan president Artur Mas after an inauguration ceremony at the new headquarters of fashion and fragrance company Puig in Hospitalet de Llobregat, near Barcelona, on Monday. Spain’s parliament is to vote tomorrow on a petition from the Catalan parliament seeking the power to call a popular vote on the region’s independence. Photograph: Toni Albir/Reuters

Conservative central government says plan lacks legality

A child walks under a reproduction of The Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci in Naples. The Holy Chalice, which Spanish researchers claim to have found, is the vessel that Jesus is said to have used at the Last Supper to serve the wine. Photograph: Mario Laporta/AFP

Research suggests chalice from which Christ supposedly drunk is in León’s basilica of Saint Isidore

Spain’s  Prince Felipe and Princess Letizia stand in front the coffin of former prime minister Adolfo Suárez during his wake at the Spanish parliament in Madrid yesterday. Photograph: Juanjo Martin/Reuters

Former prime minister a consensus-builder who modernised the country

Archbishop Desmond Tutu: also called for the release of Arnaldo Otegi, formerly of Eta’s political wing.

Nobel prizewinner likens Basque challenges to apartheid issue in his native South Africa

A demonstration in favour of Catalan independence in 2010. A recent opinion poll suggested 60 per cent of people in the region favour a split from Spain. Photograph: Gustau Nacarino/Reuters

Spanish unionists have been quick to draw parallels over planned referendum

Spanish police have dismantled a ring accused of trafficking human organs and which they say offered €40,000 to potential liver donors

Wealthy Lebanese man reportedly hired others when seeking illegal liver transplant

A woman places candles and flowers for the victims of Madrid train bombings outside a memorial monument at Atocha railway station in Madrid during the 10th anniversary of the bombings. Photograph: Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images

Several commemorative events held in Spanish capital

People waiting for a train on the platform 2 of Atocha railway station read newspapers on March 11th, 2005, with front pages commemorating the victims of the 2004 Madrid train bombing. Photograph:  Christophe Simon/AFP/Getty Images

Ten years after bombing that claimed 191 victims there is little agreement on how to remember them

Volunteers at the Association for the Recovery of Historical Memory laboratory in Ponferrada. In common with her colleagues, Nuria Maqueda (left) is unable to find paid employument and now works full-time as a volunteer identifying mass graves containing anonymous victims of the civil war. Photogragh: Guy Hedgecoe

Many in Spain feel it is best to let the country’s pre-democracy past rest in peace

The air steward at the centre of the legal action in Spain lost his job after he ate a sandwich from the on-board menu of a Ryanair aircraft during a flight in December 2010. Photograph: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

Sacked air steward told he cannot contest dismissal in Spain for eating sandwich on duty without paying

“We’ve seen a change of trend, our course has changed,” prime minister Mariano Rajoy  told the Spanish parliament  yesterday. Photograph: Sergio Perez/Reuters

Rajoy pledges to stop any Catalan breakaway move

Aracelly Santana (left), Ram Manikkalingam (second left) and Chris Maccabe (right), members of the International Verification Commission, watch a televised news report about Eta disarmament alongside Dialogue Advisory Group member Michelle Gehrig  in Bilbao  yesterday.  Photograph: Vincent West/Reuters

Move a symbolic step towards full disarmament, say inspectors

 Pedro J Ramírez, who had led the right-leaning El Mundo for 25 years, said he was departing due to “pressure from the powers that be”.  Photograph: Juan Medina/Reuters

‘El País’ and ‘El Mundo’ made announcements within three weeks of each other

Members of the Spanish Guardia Civil stand with the body of an immigrant on a beach in the Spanish city Ceuta, north Africa, on Saturday. Photograph: EPA/Reduan

Opposition, NGOs and EU ask why tear gas and rubber bullets were fired at Sub-Saharans trying to cross from Morocco to Ceuta

A pro-choice protest in Neptuno Square, Madrid, earlier this month. A recent poll showed that 80 per cent of Spaniards oppose the planned reform. Photograph: Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images

Mariano Rajoy’s government wants to limit terminations to when a woman is pregnant as the result of rape or if her health is at ri(...)

The expansion works at the Panama Canal. which have been suspended.  Photograph: Carlos Jasso/Reuters

Construction project to expand canal grinds to a halt over ‘unforeseen cost overruns’

The Mezquita, or Great Mosque of Córdoba, which encompasses a Catholic cathedral. In a controversial move, the local archbishopric is in the process of registering itself as the owner of the building. Photograph: Marcelo del Pozo/Reuters

Attempt by Catholic Church to take building out of public hands seen as part of effort to suppress monument’s Islamic identity (...)

Princess Cristina of Spain leaves the Palma de Mallorca courthouse after giving evidence on Saturday as part of the “Noos trial”. Photograph: David Ramos/Getty Images

Princess Cristina undergoes five-hour interrogation

A Spanish national police officer stands guard at the rear entrance of a courthouse  in  Palma de Mallorca.  Princess Cristina, daughter of King Juan Carlos, will appear before the magistrate there on February 8th. Photograph: Enrique Calvo/Reuters

Manner of Cristina’s arrival in court for corruption case triggers national debate

Tthe border fence and a monitoring tower between Spain and Morocco in the Spanish enclave of Melilla. Photograph: Pierre-Philippe Marcou/AFP

Razor wire is used to protect two Spanish cities on north African coast

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