Robles reprimands the partners for "sowing doubts" about the CNI and does not explain the espionage

The Defense Minister, Margarita Robles, has left Congress without giving further explanations on espionage scandal to people linked to the independence movement, despite the fact that the Government referred to their appearance -as well as to that of the director of the CNI, Paz Esteban, which will take place this Thursday behind closed doors- to expand the data that the parliamentary groups were demanding on the situation. The president of the Defense Commission, the PP deputy José Antonio Bermúdez de Castro, has come to the rescue by interrupting the first intervention that has demanded information about the espionage. Before Robles' reply began, he once again recalled that matters related to the CNI are protected by law. And the minister took refuge in that during her reply: "I would like to be able to tell her, but at this point I don't want to commit a crime, especially when the director of the CNI is going to appear with the appropriate information."

The delay in detecting espionage on Sánchez and Robles questions the effectiveness of the CNI

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What the Minister of Defense has done is reprimand the allies of the coalition for "sowing doubts" about the actions of the CNI, which she has claimed. “It is very comfortable to arrive here and make accusations without any evidence”, insisted Robles, who has reiterated that the attacks on the intelligence services are, in his opinion, unfair because “you cannot defend yourself”. "Fortunately, the reserved expenses commission has been set up," added Robles, who has assured that in this way the director of the CNI will be able to give explanations while she is "stoically enduring accusations that do not correspond to reality." It has been the Government that has left its continuity up in the air. Robles herself has not responded to her arrival in the room to the question about whether Esteban should resign.

“You are the political person in charge”, the EH Bildu deputy, Jon Iñarritu, has reminded him, who has asserted that he misses “that Margarita Robles who was the scourge of the State sewers”. And it is that the partners of the Government point out that there may be uncontrolled elements of the CNI or the State Security Forces and Bodies, as there were in the past. However, Robles has assured that in Spain the interventions always have a judicial authorization.

That is why she has urged people who are suspected of having been spied on to go to court, as she has said Pedro Sánchez and she have done as a sign of “transparency”. Robles has once again justified that the Intelligence services have monitored certain independentistas and, on this occasion, he has referred, without mentioning him, to the former president of the Generalitat Carles Puigdemont and the other leaders who left Spain. “When someone is called to appear there are some who appear and others do not appear and leave. Here there have been people who had the courage to take on a judicial process while others have not”, he pointed out.

Gap between United We Can and Robles

The appearance of Robles has made clear the distance of the socialist wing of the Government with the parliamentary allies, who have demanded an investigation commission that brought down the PSOE with the help of PP, Vox and Ciudadanos; but above all, the gap between Robles and the minority partner of the Government has become clear. "The current situation is unsustainable," warned the spokesman for United We Can, Pablo Echenique, who has called on Robles to assume "political responsibilities at the highest level" for espionage on both Pedro Sánchez and herself as well as the Catalan and Basque independence movement. "The seriousness of this espionage is unprecedented and cannot be minimized," said Echenique.

“The first hypothesis is that the perpetrators were agents of a foreign state or some uncontrolled cell of the secret services or the State Security Forces and Bodies. We think that the first hypothesis would reveal an unacceptable inability to protect the president's communications (...) and national security", warned Echenique: "The second would reveal a flagrant incompetence or dereliction of duties when cleaning the sewers of the state. "It seems clear to us that whatever the authorship, political responsibilities are assumed at the highest level," said the parliamentary spokesman for the coalition's minority partner.

The dart has not only come in that direction. The minister has made use of article 1 of the law that regulates the CNI to remember that "it is the public body responsible for providing the President of the Government and the Government of the nation with information, analysis, studies or proposals". "You know the president and the government, a collegiate body, don't you?" Robles asked before urging the ministers of United We Can to request access to those reports. “The 22 people that make it up have this access, they can request it and there is even an Intelligence commission,” she has stated. “We all have to speak with a lot of responsibility, I also ask you for it”, Robles has sentenced.

His words have left Echenique "more worried" than he was, as he said in his reply. “He has come to hide behind the entire Council of Ministers, the agents of the State security forces and bodies, and behind a very limited concept of democracy. You know what you have to do, for your dignity and the dignity of the Government”.

The PSOE spokeswoman, Zaida Cantera, has asked Echenique to stop "watching spy movies" in which there are "conspiracies", "psychosis" and "paranoia". "Leaders from all over the world have been spied on and have admitted publicly," Cantera defended: "Let's not try here today to move the mill to cut off heads as if we knew how to stop espionage."

Next, Robles has settled the debate with his government partner, recalling that Echenique is not the usual spokesman in that commission: “He has not found out that the agenda was for the EU Strategic Compass. Maybe it doesn't matter to him, but as a party that is in government it should matter a lot to him”.

The right applauds Robles and points out the cracks in the coalition

Faced with criticism from government partners, Robles has been applauded by right-wing groups, who put the Minister of the Presidency, Félix Bolaños, in the spotlight, who has been the visible face in this matter by offering the conference press in which Moncloa announced the attack on the cell phones of the president and the defense minister. An issue that for the PP is "highly sensitive." Alberto Núñez Feijóo's party questions that this strategy pursues "political goals" in the face of the open crisis with the coalition partners, especially ERC, for espionage against the independence movement. The PP spokesman, Carlos Rojas, has defended that the explanations be given "where they should be given", that is, in the commission of reserved expenses, which meets behind closed doors, to avoid "an investigation commission watered with political populism" . And he has also taken the opportunity to point out the cracks in Sánchez's cabinet: "All members of the Government must defend the institutions of the State and if they do not, they must cease or be dismissed."

The spokesman for Ciudadanos, Edmundo Bal, has begun by “thanking her for being the only minister who sensibly and rationally raises something typical of jurists regarding this case: evidence is needed, it is necessary to let the judges work and not attack servers public”. Along the same lines as Robles, Bal has defended the members of the CNI because "since they do their work in secret they cannot defend themselves" while he has targeted other members of the Government, among whom he has cited Bolaños, for spending his life "Apologizing in front of ERC and Bildu" while she "is left alone".

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