• Spain’s crisis-hit Socialists face leadership showdown


    MADRID: Spain’s crisis-hit Socialists are gathering for a key meeting on Saturday that may help end the country’s prolonged political deadlock and decide the fate of embattled party leader Pedro Sanchez. The roughly 300 members of the party’s federal committee – its de-facto parliament – have been summoned to the Socialist headquarters in Madrid for a showdown between allies of Sanchez and opponents who want him out. The outcome could see the party lift its veto on a new government led by acting conservative Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, a move that could be key to unblocking Spain’s nine-month political paralysis. Since December 2015, the country has been without a fully functioning executive as rivals fail to agree on a government following two elections in which none of the main parties won an absolute majority.



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