Spanish PM condemns death threat letters with bullet cartridges sent to officials

Spanish PM condemns death threat letters with bullet cartridges sent to officials
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez (L) and Spain's Minister of Interior Fernando Grande-Marlaska (R) attend the symbolic destruction of nearly 1,400 weapons in March 2021. Photo: JAVIER SORIANO/AFP
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez on Thursday condemned deaths threats made against the country's interior minister and two other top officials.

Spanish media reported that Interior Minister Fernando Grande-Marlaska, the leader of far-left party Podemos Pablo Iglesias, and the head of the Guardia Civil police force, Maria Gamez, received threatening letters with bullet cartridges inside.

“Our emphatic condemnation of the serious threats received by Marlaska, Gamez and Iglesias,” Sanchez tweeted along with a link to a news report about the letters.

The Socialist premier called for dialogue in the face of disagreements, adding that justice and democracy would prevail over “threats and violence”.

The death threats come amid deep political polarisation and during campaigning for a regional election in Madrid on May 4th.

Iglesias stepped down last month as a deputy prime minister in Sanchez’s coalition government to run in the election as Podemos’ candidate to head the regional government of Madrid. He blamed the far-right for the threats.

“They’re threatening democracy. Because they don’t attack us for who we are, but for what we represent,” Iglesias tweeted along with a photo of the handwritten letter which he received as well as four bullets.

“Today it is me, but if the impunity and media whitewashing of the far-right continues, tomorrow it will be other colleagues.”

Iglesias and Grande-Marlaska, an openly gay former judge, have been accused by some on the right of being weak on issues such as migration and Catalan separatism.

Gamez is the first woman to head the Guardia Civil, Spain’s oldest police force.

She was appointed by the interior ministry last year.

The death threat letters all bear the same postmark and were sent on Monday, according to news reports.

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