Madrid, Nov 9 (EFE).- Spanish politician Alejo Vidal-Quadras, the former vice president of the European Parliament and former president of the conservative People’s Party (PP) in Catalonia, was wounded Thursday in a shooting in central Madrid, police told EFE.
Police sources explained that Vidal-Quadras, 78, was shot in the face at around 1:30 pm in Calle Núñez de Balboa, in the heart of the Spanish capital.
The Samur-Protección Civil emergency service reported that the wounded man was conscious and was taken to a Madrid hospital, while the local police cordoned off the area.
Police were looking for a suspect who fled on a motorcycle wearing a black helmet after shooting the politician.
The investigation is being carried out by a homicide unit. No arrests have been made, police said.
Vidal-Quadras, chaired the conservative party in the northeastern Spanish region of Catalonia in the 1990s and then was an MEP until 2014, after which he briefly joined the Spanish far-right Vox party.
Vidal-Quadras was prominent in Spanish politics until he moved to Brussels following a disagreement over a deal the PP made with Catalan nationalists to govern in Spain.
In Belgium, he served as an MEP and as vice president of the European Parliament between 1999 and 2014.
He left the PP in 2014, after 30 years as a member, alleging lack of internal democracy and disagreements with its national board, and joined the far-right Vox, which he left a year later.
His shooting comes amid heightened tensions in Spain over a controversial proposed amnesty law that would pardon Catalan separatists who were involved in an independence referendum in 2017.
The agreement struck on Thursday has paved the way for Socialist Party (PSOE) leader Pedro Sánchez to remain in office for another four-year term, sparking intense anger from the country’ right-wing groups.
Writing on X, formerly Twitter, Sánchez said he wanted to “convey his solidarity and wishes for a speedy recovery to Alejo Vidal-Quadras.
“All my sympathy at this time for him and his family. We trust that the investigation can clarify the facts as soon as possible and that those responsible will be arrested,” the interim prime minister said. EFE