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Spanish PM Zapatero reshuffles government

Spanish PM Zapatero reshuffles government

Spain's prime minister made minor changes to his Cabinet Monday to fill the void left by the departure of his interior minister _ chosen as the beleaguered ruling Socialist party's candidate in elections scheduled for early next year.
Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero promoted secretary of state for security Antonio Camacho to replace Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba in the interior ministry, highlighting the new minister's work in combating terrorism.
Zapatero said Infrastructure Minister Jose Blanco will assume Rubalcaba's second role, as government spokesman.
Rubalcaba, 59, resigned from government Friday to focus on building his campaign for the next general election, which must be called by March.
Asked whether the changes indicated the government might call early elections, Zapatero said the economic crisis was of such a serious nature that it obliged the government to think of nothing else.
"The changes mean the government continues to work nonstop," he said, adding that the priorities in coming months were to maintain stability, attain economic recovery and create employment.
The leading conservative opposition Popular Party says that following its resounding victory in May municipal and regional elections Zapatero's continuation in government only hampers the country's recovery.
Spain is enduring 21 percent unemployment and polls predict the Socialists will suffer a major defeat against the Popular Party in the general election. Zapatero is not seeking another term.
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Associated Press writer Ciaran Giles contributed to this report.


Updated : 2020-12-05 02:43 GMT+08:00