With the end of the year in sight, SUR in English takes a look back at some of the stories which have made the newspaper’s front page in 2012.
The year started with Spain’s then new centre-right government announcing a series of spending cuts and tax increases, including a surprise income tax hike. The austerity package was designed to raise 6.9 billion euros.
The national meteorological agency issued a weather warning for southern Spain due to a cold snap, which saw temperatures fall well below zero in rural areas of the province. There were reports of heavy snowfall in parts of Antequera and Ronda.
Trade unions called on the whole of Spain to ‘down tools’ for a general strike in response to the government’s labour reforms. The unions said they were particularly confident that the call for industrial action would be answered in Andalucía, as the Andalusians had just voted in the socialist party to the regional government. In the event, the airport and port suffered severe disruption, but schools, the health service and shops and services functioned relatively well throughout the day.
When questioned in the Spanish Senate, the Development Minister, Ana Pastor, confirmed that the long-awaited A-7 tunnel, which would take traffic under the notorious traffic blackspot in San Pedro would open in May – a month ahead of schedule.
On a private visit to Botswana, King Juan Carlos suffered an accident which led to a photo of His Majesty posing next to a dead elephant being beamed around the world. He responded to the public outcry with an apology: “I am very sorry, I was wrong and it won’t happen again”.
Malaga CF made history at La Rosaleda stadium at the end of 2011/12 football season by defeating Sporting de Gijón and securing a place in the Champions League. Fans celebrated across the city into the early hours and there was an official celebration at the City Hall.
A serious crash at the La Cañada roundabout underscored how improvements had failed to reduce the number of traffic accidents at hotspots across the province. The Traffic Department reported that there were 41 trouble areas across Malaga, with more than half of them on the western stretch of the A-7 and the ring roads around the provincial capital.
Prince Edward and his wife Sophie Rhys-Jones visited Gibraltar as part of the British Jubilee celebrations: the visit was described by Spain as “untimely”, given the on-going fishing dispute.
And with elections in Greece imminent, Spain’s own credit rating was downgraded by Moody’s to just a notch above “junk” level.
King Juan Carlos welcomed SUR representatives at Zarzuela Palace in Madrid to mark the newspaper’s 75th anniversary. The monarch commented on challenges facing the media industry and enquired about SUR in English and SUR Deutsche Ausgabe.
The provincial capital celebrated its annual week-long, city-wide fair, with the festivities kicking-off with a spectacular fireworks display. At the night ‘feria’ this year there were more than 220 ‘casetas’ offering food, drink and music, plus some 100 fairground attractions, although official spending on the celebrations was cut.
The province started a difficult recovery after the worst wildfire in two decades ravaged more than 8,200 hectares, destroying scores of properties and killing two and injuring five people. Many thousands more were temporarily evacuated in six municipalities.
At the end of the month, torrential rain brought severe flooding to the province of Malaga, claiming two victims and causing many million euros’ worth of damage.
Malaga CF won 1-0 at home against Italian heavyweights AC Milan in an historic Champions League match, which put them at the top of their group by a remarkable five points.
Under the slogan of ‘Justice For All’, more than a thousand lawyers from across the province protested in Malaga against the introduction of new court fees by the central government.
Anti-austerity protestors demonstrated in Malaga’s Plaza de la Constitución during official celebrations, led by the Mayor, Francisco de la Torre, to mark the 34th anniversary of the 1978 Spanish constitution.