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Spanish PM says he’s focused on euro, Spain’s interests


Madrid : Spain’s negotiations within the European Union have focused on measures “that benefit the general interests of the euro and those of Spain at every specific moment” and decisions are made “on that basis”, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said in an interview published Sunday.

“I’m convinced that carrying out my duty will result in my winning the elections again,” Rajoy said in an interview published in the Spanish daily ABC and in which Italy’s Corriere della Sera, France’s Le Journal du Dimanche and Germany’s Bild am Sonntag also participated.

“Reality” is what has prevented the fulfillment of the proposed election program that led to his overwhelming victory at the polls last November, the prime minister said.

“I don’t have any magic wands and I never promised miracles. We’ll get out of this, I have no doubt, but with effort, perseverance and faith in ourselves,” Rajoy, the leader of the conservative Popular Party, or PP, said.

In the interview, to which ABC devoted its cover and eight inside pages, the premier said that he understands that people are being hurt by the adjustment measures pushed by his government, and he said that he and his Cabinet are “trying to be fair and equitable at the same time as (we are) distributing the efforts”, adding that “the cutbacks have not affected retirees”.

Regarding the possibility of a rescue or financial assistance from the European Union for Spain, he reacted cautiously.

“We’re going to await the decisions of the Central European Bank and on the basis of that we’ll make a decision that, today, has still not been made, but if I believe it’s good for all of Europe, for the euro and for Spain, I’ll make it and, if not, I won’t,” Rajoy said.

Rajoy said that the central government will help the northeastern region of Catalonia, which has requested more than 5 billion euros (about $6.25 billion) in financial aid, because it cannot “leave anyone to their fate,” but he added that the Catalonian authorities “have commitments to take on”.