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The Chamber of Deputies of Spain approves the law of Democratic Memory that declares the Franco regime illegal

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The draft legislation seeks to maintain the memory of the victims of the Spanish civil war and the dictatorship of Francisco Franco.

The Chamber of Deputies of Spain approved this Thursday the Memory Bill Democratic that declares the Francisco Franco regime illegal and seeks to maintain the memory of the victims of the Spanish civil war and the Franco dictatorship, collect local media.

The law, which is expected which enters into force in September after the approval of the Senate and its publication in the Official Gazette, establishes that the State assumes the search and identification of the more than 114,000 people who disappeared during the civil war and the dictatorship. To carry it out, a DNA bank of the victims will be created to facilitate their identification, as well as a map of all the mass graves in the country.

“The State has to exhume the bodies of the victims of the Franco dictatorship […] There are still 114,000 forcibly disappeared”, emphasized the President of the Government of Spain, Pedro Sánchez, on Tuesday in Parliament. “We are, after Cambodia, the country in the world with the most disappeared,” he added.

In addition to the declaration of illegality of the Franco regime, the Francoist courts will be considered as outside the law, as well as null all your convictions. In this sense, the nullity will give the affected parties the right to obtain “a declaration of recognition and personal reparation”.

Despite the fact that the proposed amendment does not repeal the Amnesty of 1977, which it qualifies as an instrument in favor of “reconciliation and the construction of an advanced democratic society”, affirms the prevalence of international law humanitarian, which establishes that “war crimes, crimes against humanity, genocide and torture are considered imprescriptible and not subject to amnesty”.

A prosecutor’s office dedicated to investigating human rights violations committed during that period will also be established. Until now, the Amnesty Law prevented any type of persecution in the name of the transition to democracy.

On the other hand, sanctions of up to 150,000 euros for destroying mass graves, undermining places of democratic memory or extolling Francoism.

Likewise, the legislative project will change the name of the Valley of the Fallen, the mega-monument that Franco had built using political prisoners as labor and that housed the remains of the dictator until October 2019, for Valle de Cuelgamuros. The circumstances of its construction and its meaning “in order to strengthen constitutional and democratic values” will also be announced.

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