• Measures introduced by PNV, PSOE have support to overturn controversial law
• Passed by 2015 PP majority, law curbs rights to protest, monitor police abuse
Opposition parties in Congress on Tuesday overwhelmingly supported two separate measures that pave the way for the repeal of Spain’s controversial two-year-old Ley de Seguridad Ciudadana (Law for Citizens’ Security), widely referred to simply as Ley Mordaza (‘Gag Law’), passed in 2015 by a majority vote of the conservative governing Partido Popular (PP) deputies in Congress over the objections of all other political parties.
Two legislative bills submitted Tuesday by the Partido Nacionalista Vasco (PNV) and the Socialist party (PSOE) received 211 votes and 176 votes in favor, respectively, and will now be debated in congressional committee to reconcile the two measures. Once reintroduced as a single piece of legislation for final approval by Congress, a simple 176-vote majority of the 350-member Chamber of Deputies will be required to overturn the law.
The Ley Mordaza passed by the PP in March 2015 took effect in July of that year and carries stiff penalties and fines of 600 euros for anyone charged with “disrespecting a police officer” and a fine of as much as 600,000 euros for staging a protest that is not approved and authorized in advance by the government. The law also makes it a crime to photograph police officers.