With the case of the Aquarius ship, Spain of the new socialist government of Pedro Sánchez showed its welcoming and open face. But quietly and far from the cameras, all concentrated in the port of Barcelona, Spain itself was becoming the most hostile European nation to Israel.
First there was the decision of the third largest city of the country, Valencia, to embrace the boycott of Israel by proclaiming itself a "zone free from Israeli apartheid". Then the leader of the third largest Spanish party, Pablo Iglesias Turrión, head of Podemos, defined the Jewish state as a "criminal and illegal country".
The city of Oviedo, capital of Asturias, then canceled the concert of the Israeli Symphonic Orchestra of Netanya, citing "political reasons". The local producer of the concert, which was to be held in Oviedo in the fall, received an official notice from the municipality stating that the cancellation of the event was the result of a political decision to "stop Israeli activities in the city".
Oviedo also canceled the performance of an Israeli ballet. The City Council of Cadiz had already canceled an Israeli film festival, claiming that it "contradicts the adherence to the campaign 'free from Israeli apartheid'".
And in Benicassim, near Barcelona, the Jewish musician and reggae star Matthew Paul Miller, aka "Matisyahu", had refused to comply with the request of the music festival director who ordered him to produce a video or written statement in which the singer was to support an Arab-Palestinian state. His performance was canceled.
While the Israeli embassy in Madrid complains of "a lack of cooperation from the city", news came of the first autonomous European region that officially boycotted Israel. This is Navarre, where all the Spanish parties except the Popular voted for the motion in which Spain is invited to "suspend its ties with Israel" until the country ceases its "policy of criminal repression of the Palestinian population" .Eighty Spanish towns and councils have already joined the Israeli boycott campaign.
The Israeli embassy in Madrid wrote a letter to Podemos' members accusing them of practicing a "systematic boycott policy" against Israel, after a group of deputies decided not to attend a scheduled meeting with the Israeli ambassador Daniel Kutner.
El Al, Israel's flagship airline, intended to create a direct flight from Santiago de Compostela to Tel Aviv, but the project was rejected by the Spanish tourism leaders as a symbolic act of support for the boycott.
The city of Pamplona also declared Israeli officials "personae non grata" in the city. This time the Socialists voted against, while the Basque Nationalist Party, Podemos and the Communist Party stood in favor. The Israeli embassy in Madrid condemned the resolution, recalling that "the kingdom of Navarre was the last of the Iberian peninsula to expel the Jews and the city council of Pamplona was the first to declare us persona non grata. 'Navarra 1498: Jews out - Pamplona 2018: we are forbidden to enter.'"
The Spanish ports seem open to all, except to the Israelis.https://www.israelnationalnews.com/Articles/Article.aspx/22408