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Spain opposition calls on PM Rajoy to resign

Published on Feb 4, 2013 7:23 AM
A protestor sprays graffiti reading, "Rajoy, thief" during a demonstration against corruption in Madrid, Spain, Saturday, Feb 2, 2013. Spain's governing Popular Party insists its financial accounts are totally legal and denies a newspaper report of regular under-the-table payments to leading members, including current Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy. -- PHOTO : AP

MADRID (AFP) - The leader of Spain's opposition Socialist party called on Sunday for Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy to resign amid a damaging corruption scandal.

"Rajoy should give up his role as the head of government (because) he cannot tackle the very difficult situation confronting Spain," Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba told reporters.

Spain's centre-left newspaper El Pais published account ledgers purportedly showing that donations were channelled into secret payments to Mr Rajoy and other top party officials. Mr Rajoy has dismissed the ledgers as false and has vehemently denies receiving any payments.

The prime minister "cannot lead the country in this delicate time," Mr Rubalcaba said. "His presence (at the head of the government) is not going to help resolve this political crisis," the opposition leader said.

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