Zapatero faces complex negotiations to form new government in Spain

(dpa) - Spain's Socialist Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero was Monday seen as facing complicated negotiations to form his second government after being re-elected short of an absolute majority in Sunday's parliamentary elections.

The Socialists clearly defeated the opposition conservative People's Party (PP), but will need to continue relying on the support of small regionalist and leftist parties, editorials said.

The negotiations will not be made easier by the weakening of the small parties, which lost representation to the two main parties in a sign of the increasing bi-polarization of Spanish politics.

The Socialists took 44 per cent of the vote and 169 seats in the 350-strong parliament, up from 164 seats in 2004, with nearly all votes counted.

The PP reaped 40 per cent and 153 seats, up from 148 seats four years ago.

The PP's result remained clearly short of what the party had hoped for, and cast uncertainty over the future of party leader Mariano Rajoy, whose confrontational tactics and lacklustre style had been criticized during the campaign.

The biggest losers, however, were the small parties, among which the Catalan separatist party ERC and the far-left Izquierda Unida will no longer have their own parliamentary groups after only taking 3 and 2 seats respectively.

The best smaller performers were Catalan regionalist formation CiU, with 11 seats, and the Basque Nationalist Party (PNV) with 6 seats.

The Socialists were likely to find it difficult to form an alliance with CiU, which competes with the Catalan branch of the Socialist Party that governs the north-eastern region, the daily El Mundo observed.

The Basques and Catalans were expected to demand more self-government for their regions in exchange for their eventual support, a plan that could create tension between the government and the conservative opposition.

Zapatero on Sunday pledged to seek to improve the spiteful relations between the government and the PP, which has waged a merciless opposition after suffering a surprise defeat to the Socialists in 2004.

The 2004 result was believed to have been influenced by Islamist train bombings that killed 191 people in Madrid three days before the vote.

Sunday's elections were also overshadowed by bloodshed, with the militant Basque separatist group ETA gunning down a former Socialist councillor in the Basque town of Arrasate two days before the poll.

The killing was believed to have helped the Socialists by prompting more of their supporters to use their right to vote.

The fight against ETA has been one of the main points of disagreement between the government and the PP, which condemned Zapatero's unsuccessful attempt to negotiate with ETA, accusing him of being lenient on terrorists.

In addition to the continuing challenge of ETA, which killed five people during Zapatero's first legislature, the new government will have to deal with a slowing economy.

Zapatero would have to take unpopular measures to stem a rising inflation and unemployment rate, commentators said.

Iran's stock exchange needs structural reforms - Iranian MP
Iran's stock exchange needs structural reforms - Iranian MP
Iran's first VP invites Shanghai Cooperation Organization to invest in Chabahar Port
Iran's first VP invites Shanghai Cooperation Organization to invest in Chabahar Port
Expert talks short-term price decrease on Azerbaijan's car market
Expert talks short-term price decrease on Azerbaijan's car market
Loading Bars
Another Turkish vaccine ready for human trials
Georgian Finance Minister tests positive for COVID-19
Iran's stock exchange needs structural reforms - Iranian MP
Kyrgyzstan provides online courses for entrepreneurs in field of tourism
Number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Serbia up by over 6,224 in past day
Azerbaijani Defense Ministry thanks Turkey's Defense Ministry
Bitcoin hits record high after steep fall last week
Logistic support assets of Russian peacekeepers in Karabakh arrive in Azerbaijan (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Turkmenistan significantly increases cement imports from Turkey
Turkish sappers begin mine clearing in liberated territories of Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan extends learning from home amid ongoing anti-coronavirus measures
Azerbaijani FM, Moldovan minister exchange views on latest situation in region
Two more Italian municipalities express support to Azerbaijan
Iran's first VP invites Shanghai Cooperation Organization to invest in Chabahar Port
Expert talks short-term price decrease on Azerbaijan's car market
Kazakhstan sees increase in lending to legal entities over 10M2020
Employment in Iran's Razavi Khorasan Province soars
Azerbaijan raises export to Croatia
Iranian Energy Exchange announces products to be on sale December 1
Preventive diplomacy is integral part of Turkmenistan's neutrality - president of Turkmenistan
Azerbaijan to minimize plastic consumption
Kazakhstan to set up int'l center to develop oil&gas engineering in co-op with ENI, Shell
Georgian Walnuts company aims for eco-friendly production
President of Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan sends letter to president of Azerbaijan
Uzbekistan exporting plums mainly to Russia and Kazakhstan
Azerbaijan's Baku Metro to engage testing services through tender
Armenian PM's attempts to meet with Russian president fail
Iran can increase exports through processing industries – economist
Iran hopes to see Iran-Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce headquarters open in Kabul
GM, Nikola announce reworked, smaller deal focused on supplying fuel-cell systems
Georgia’s Innovation and Technology Agency discloses volume of startup projects
Turkmenistan's Turkmengas opens tender for purchase of chemical products
Uzbek textile products mostly imported by Russia
Uzbek currency rates for November 30
Trade turnover between Azerbaijan and Spain greatly improves
Azerbaijan increases value of year-on-year export to Kazakhstan
SecGen of Iraqi Council of Representatives sends letter to President Aliyev
Azerbaijan reports 2,981 new COVID-19 cases, 1,226 recoveries
Azerbaijani 'Barda' ferry ship repaired and put into operation
Argentine companies to cooperate with Azerbaijan’s Azexport website and Digital Shopping Hub
Uzbek Ministry of Finance forecasts increase of public debt
Swiss Investment Company to issue bonds in Uzbek national currency
Georgia purchases 10 new high flow oxygen generators from Turkey
Iran hopes for economic revival of Azerbaijan's Nagorno-Karabakh - Vice President Jahangiri
JCPOA to holding meeting in Vienna
Excise tax on import of commodity items to be abolished in Uzbekistan
Income from pine-cone exports up in Georgia
Azerbaijan reveals data on loans issued to farmers over 11M2020
YARAT Contemporary Art Space to present exhibition project "Make Island For Yourself" in Museum of Azerbaijani Painting
Amazon, Apple stay away from new French initiative to set principles for Big Tech
Georgia reveals volume of exported apples
Azerbaijan's ANAMA discloses total number of civilian casualties from mines
Development Bank of Kazakhstan eyeing support of mining, metallurgical projects
Khazar Consortium opens tender for purchase of tires in Turkmenistan
Georgia reveals top five insurance companies due to paid claims
Cemeteries destroyed, mosques used as cowsheds in Karabakh - renowned French photographer (PHOTOS)
Baku Transport Agency, ARIS LLC sign tender contract
Azerbaijani Prosecutor General's Office urges not to visit lands liberated from occupation (VIDEO)
STAR refinery's crude oil imports rise y-o-y
Azerbaijan Mortgage & Credit Guarantee Fund says will complete 2020 with profit
Russia's Rostelecom working on inter-operator cooperation with Turkmenistan
Capitalization remains strength of Georgian Basisbank
Hungarian TUNGSRAM GROUP to launch production of LED street lighting in Kazakhstan
Azerbaijani agency unveils number of munitions found since Sept.27
Iran’s Bahar Azadi gold coin starts to rise
Azerbaijan to commission road connecting Tartar and Sugovushan in coming days - ANAMA (PHOTO)
Uzbek agro-industrial agency announces tender for well construction
Carlsberg Azerbaijan and AzərŞəkər signed a memorandum of cooperation (PHOTO)
S&P Global to buy IHS Markit in deal valued at $44 billion
Azerbaijan reveals number of civilians dead, following recent Armenian aggression
Uzbekistan slightly reduces import of Turkish-made chemicals
Demining of territory for future road to liberated Shusha kicked off - ANAMA
Creation of concept for audit development in Azerbaijan for 2021-2030 nearing completion
Iran's POMC launches its first compressor
Turkey continues to raise trade turnover with Azerbaijan
Ceyhan terminal’s oil transshipment from ACG nears 194 million barrels
Baku Metro switches to modern train control systems
Visits of citizens to liberated Azerbaijani territories still dangerous - ANAMA
Malaysia ready to assist in promotion of pilgrim tourism in Uzbekistan
Uzbekistan’s 10M2020 data on plastic cards revealed
Turkmenistan's natural gas reserves increased – Eni’s review
Time deposits value surges in Kazakhstan year-on-year
Iran's total rail transit up
Turkmenistan's oil reserves remain stable for several years – Eni’s review
Iran doubles budget for defense research projects
Georgia sees increase in hazelnuts export
Iran reveals its COVID-19 data for November 30
CNG can easily be used instead of gasoline in Iran
Chabahar - first Iranian port to attract foreign operators - PMO
Georgia decreases mobilizing funds in tax revenue
Russia increases ten-month value of chemical products import from Turkey
New apartments to be added to Azerbaijan's mortgage fund base
Number of enterprises put into operation in Iran's South Khorasan Province up
Georgia sees decrease in estimated real GDP
Dynamics of Azerbaijan’s oil production since 2000
Iran's Central Bank announces number of exchanged checks
Israel-Lebanon maritime border talks postponed, officials say
Azerbaijan to assign 'stars' to hotels given level of COVID-19 pandemic-related security
Cargo, passenger traffic via Turkish Adana Airport lowers in 10M2020
Iran reveals exports of mining products
All news