Alexa
  • Directory of Taiwan

Zapatero takes oath of office as Spain's Prime Minister

Zapatero takes oath of office as Spain's Prime Minister

Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero was sworn in Saturday for his second term as prime minister.
He is to announce his Cabinet later in the day.
Lawmakers approved Zapatero's second term on Friday, formally handing him the challenges of a slumping economy, resurgent Basque militants and governing with no set allies in parliament.
Zapatero, whose Socialists won a general election on March 9 but fell short of an absolute majority, did not get enough support in parliament in a first vote this week, forcing a second-round ballot, in which the threshold for approval was lower.
At a ceremony Saturday before King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia at Madrid's Zarzuela Palace, Zapatero took his oath of office with his hand on an open copy of Spain's constitution.
His first task will be to announce his Cabinet.
Maria Teresa Fernandez de la Vega is expected to remain as Deputy Prime Minister, a mainstay of his previous government.
Because his party failed to win an absolute majority, Zapatero will need to broker deals in parliament.
Spain's economy, once the envy of Europe having posted more than a decade of sustained growth, is cooling due mainly to a stall in the once-booming real estate sector and construction industry.
The International Monetary Fund said in a report this week that Spain's gross domestic product growth is projected to fall to 1.8 percent this year, a drop from the 3.8 percent increase recorded in 2007.
Zapatero's other big challenge is the armed Basque separatist group ETA, which declared a cease-fire in March 2006 but grew frustrated with a lack of concessions in peace talks with Zapatero's government and now is back on the offensive having set off a string of bombings.


Updated : 2021-10-16 04:16 GMT+08:00