Madrid mayor names respected former Socialist senator to lead city’s ‘Historic Memory’ commission

Former Socialist party Senator Francisca Sauquillo to head Madrid's 'Historic Memory' commission. Photo: Público
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• New commission to seek consensus on removal of Franco-era markers •

Madrid mayor Manuela Carmena has named the respected attorney and former Socialist party Senator Francisca “Paca” Sauquillo to lead the capital city’s “Historic Memory” commission, part of a move aimed to stem criticism and controversy around the renaming of streets and removal of plaques and markers commemorating figures of Spain’s 36-year Franco dictatorship.

Accompanying the annoumcement of Carmena’s appointment of Sauquillo, set for approval Wednesday with the votes of Madrid city councillors from the Podemos-backed Ahora Madrid coalition and the Socialist party (PSOE), was notice that the seven-member commission will fall under direct jurisdiction of Carmena’s office, removing it from the city’s Culture department that had sparked controversy last month when Franco-era signage was ordered removed without the agreed-upon prior consultation with other parties on the Madrid council.

Sauquillo, who in addition to being a respected civil rights attorney and former Madrid regional deputy and Senator for the PSOE is also a longtime friend of the mayor, will take charge of the commission’s work to reach a consensual agreement on the renaming of streets and removal or relocation of plaques and monuments closely linked to the right-wing dictatorship that ruled Spain from the end of the Spanish Civil War in 1939 until Franco’s death in 1975.

► Read More in Spanish at Público and El País …

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