Esquerra calls for removal of portraits and statues of Emeritus King Juan Carlos from Spain’s Congress

Esquerra, along with other pro-independence parties, believes the Emeritus King of Spain “does not deserve public recognition” by a democratic institution.

The Esquerra Group in the Spanish Congress and other pro-independence parties on Tuesday requested the removal of all portraits and statues of Juan Carlos I from the premises of the Spanish Chamber. The demand, endorsed by Basque EH Bildu, Catalonia’s Junts per Catalunya and CUP, and BNG of Galicia, states that “Juan Carlos de Borbón’s conduct unbecoming, along with the investigation by the Prosecutor’s Office, means he does not deserve public recognition” by an institution such as Spain’s Congress.

“It is all good and well that in a seat of popular sovereignty there should be portraits and busts of those chosen by the people, but it is still better if there are none at all of wheeler-dealers and fraudsters,” said the Esquerra spokesperson in Congress, Gabriel Rufián.

In the request, the pro-independence groups emphasize that “the several cases of corruption, tax fraud and money laundering recently revealed involving Juan Carlos de Borbón are especially serious,” and they call to mind that the Spanish Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office recently referred to the Supreme Court proceedings initiated on an alleged crime of corruption in international transactions concerning the execution of an AVE high-speed train line in Saudi Arabia.

However, on Tuesday the Congressional Steering Committee overturned—with the votes of the socialist PSOE, the conservative People’s Party and far-right VOX—a request by Esquerra to establish a commission of inquiry into these allegations.