1709750732 The Left of Madrid is following a request from

The Left of Madrid is following a request from Vox | open to protecting the Valley of the Fallen Madrid News

Esplanade in the Cuelgamuros ValleyValley of the Fallen, now renamed Valle de Cuelgamuros.Santi Burgos

The PSOE and Más Madrid decided this Wednesday to protect the Valley of the Fallen from any alteration or modification of the architectural complex, as Vox has been demanding since 2022, although they have insisted on the need for “resignification” or “democratic recycling”. “The monument that until 2019 served as the burial place of the dictator Francisco Franco and was built for the greater glory of the dictatorship by thousands of prisoners who are still buried in this place without the consent of their families. However, the extreme right demands that the regional government of Isabel Díaz Ayuso be the one to declare Cuelgamuros a cultural asset (BIC), while the left believes that the state should act since the monument is part of the national heritage. This was made clear this Wednesday in the Cultural Commission of the Madrid Assembly, which took place in the heat of the declaration by the Government of Castilla y León on the BIC of the Pyramid of the Italians, a fascist monument in Burgos.

More information

“The community is not responsible. Ask for it in Congress in the format of a non-legislative proposal and you will have our support,” said Más Madrid MP Alicia Torrija forcefully. “When Podemos organized a meeting called Exhumar el Valle in 2018, they called me a dissident because, like BIC, I defended the protection of the Valley of the Fallen,” he began. “We are faced with an uncomfortable legacy, a legacy in conflict (…) The monument is not aseptic. We have 30,000 dead, 40,000. (…),” he recalled. “There is only one possible approach, that of human rights.” What needs to be done is democratic recycling, explaining without destroying (…) There is no point in explaining [BIC] “Just the cross that makes sense is the whole thing,” he continued. And he has defended: “To remember, it is necessary to preserve the elements that we do not want to forget.”

The PSOE's Mar Espinar has made a similar argument, although with less force. “What BIC wants to explain still houses many unidentified bodies, it is still painstaking work to exhume anonymous remains,” he told Vox representatives. “This space will certainly not remain as it is so that everything remains the same, it will remain as it is when it is declared a BIC in order to transform it into an educational center of democratic memory, because it is a museum of horror for thousands and thousands of families,” he argued. And he emphasized: “We are at the other end of Vox’s strategy, but I personally see no direct resistance to the BIC declaration. Of course, I believe that in this case Cuelgamuros must become “a center of remembrance.”

Díaz Ayuso's commitment to maintaining the complex in its current state is well known. In October 2022, he responded to a letter sent to him by a representative of Manos Cleans, assuring that he would “never” give permission to demolish the cross or other elements of the Cuelgamuros Valley if the government wanted to take it away According to El Independiente's website, it is a type of demolition. An intervention that goes beyond conservation in the monumental complex in the Madrid town of San Lorenzo de El Escorial.

In fact, Díaz Ayuso, under pressure from Vox, flirted with advocating for the protection of the group itself from the state's Democratic Remembrance Law in the last legislative session, when her government was in the minority. Thus, in 2023, the executive leaked that it believed it had found a way that could guarantee that not a single stone of the monument was touched: the recently approved Heritage Law of the Community of Madrid, which includes ethnographic heritage properties of a “religious nature” and architecture , including traditional calvaries and crosses, as well as decorative elements and movable property directly related to the cultural property to be protected.”

What influences the most is what happens next. So you don't miss anything, subscribe.

Subscribe to

However, there has been no progress since then and Vox, which was in the doldrums after the PP's absolute majority in the last elections, has decided to recover one of its star topics and bring it back to Parliament's current affairs.

“It is very worrying that the Community of Madrid is looking for excuses not to protect a monument of the Valley of the Fallen category,” said Vox’s Ana María Velasco. “They hide behind the fact that they can’t do it because they have no competition,” he continued. “But if you have the political will, you can. And although it does not take responsibility, knowing the Spanish government's intentions, the monument is gradually falling into disrepair.”

Since she is the first to intervene, the Vox representative cannot react to the left's positioning. The one who shows his surprise at what he heard is Pedro del Corral, PP deputy and expert on the civil war. “I congratulate, without serving as a precedent, Ms. Torrija, for her presentation, which represents a good basis for the debate to bring us closer to a future of détente regarding the Valley of the Fallen,” he congratulates himself.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter about Madrid here.