Felipe González was one of the international leaders who publicly demanded the release of the Venezuelan opponent Leopoldo López, who spent more than three years in prison until his release in 2017. The former president of the Spanish Government took advantage this Monday of the loudspeaker that gave him the presentation of a book based on these facts –They want us dead (Espasa), from Javier Moro– to vindicate the value of freedom and democracy above ideological differences and, incidentally, your right to express what you think.
“There is a problem of ageism here. Now, when you are my age, you can no longer speak, they prohibit you from speaking. Once I take the microphone, how much I enjoy it,” he joked before the public gathered at the Ateneo de Madrid in a implicit criticism of his own party for criticizing the fact that he has opposed the possibility of Pedro Sánchez acceding to the demand of ERC and Junts to grant amnesty to those involved in the illegal 1-O consultation, a position that has been described as “disloyal “from Ferraz’s own dome.
Upon leaving the event, González said that in the “next few days” he will also speak out about the call for an independence referendum in Catalonia, which is another of the requirements imposed by the pro-independence parties in exchange for their votes so that the president of the acting Government can remain at the head of La Moncloa for another term. However, he has already anticipated that he considers it a “joke.”
“I am repelled by that right or that left that distinguishes regimes by the color they present. Dictatorships are dictatorships, tyrants are tyrants,” he also stated, during the presentation of They want us dead, the politician who led the refoundation of the PSOE in Suresnes 50 years ago. “The day we all agree on that it will be easier to coordinate and move forward,” he added.
Without explicitly mentioning it, González has also censured those who, like former socialist president José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, are trying to “whitewash” Nicolás Maduro, whom he has said “would not resist even half-free elections,” and which he has differentiated from his predecessor as president of Venezuela. “Hugo Chávez had real leadership; he could lose, like he lost a referendum, but he won at the polls,” he added in contrast to the “control and repression” that he, he has denounced, has now been established in Venezuela.