Popular Party leadership candidate  Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría  in Madrid, Spain. Photograph: Pablo Cuadra/Getty Images

It’s mid-morning in El Mirón and the main square is empty, except for a large stork, which glides overhead to its nest on top of the church nearby. Th(...)

Carles Puigdemont, Catalonia’s president, applauds during a demonstration against the Spanish government and the imprisonment of separatist leaders, in Barcelona on Saturday.  Photograph: Angel Garcia/Bloomberg

The Spanish government’s plan to introduce direct rule in Catalonia is under scrutiny, with the region’s current administration warning that civil ser(...)

  Podemos leader  Pablo Iglesias gestures as he delivers a speech during a campaign meeting in Palma de Mallorca. Photograph: Jaime Reina/AFP/Getty Images

As Pablo Iglesias sought to discredit one of his rivals in Monday’s election campaign debate, the Podemos leader’s grasp of English failed him. Attack(...)

 Spanish vice prime minister Soraya Saez de Santamaria: not only is she on posters across Spain, but in the media she is seemingly omnipresent. Photograph:  Juan Carlos Hidalgo/EPA

Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría is everywhere. The deputy prime minister’s face is on thousands of election campaign posters for her governing Popular Part(...)