ANDALUCIA’S Junta may have willingly sold its own protected land to El Algarrobico developers, it has been revealed in the Supreme Court.
At the eleventh hour, just as it seemed the 20-storey behemoth squatting on a protected beach at Carboneras would finally be demolished, developers Azata del Sol have found a loophole that could see Andalucia’s Junta losing rights to the land.
This would mean that after 20 rulings declaring the hotel illegal, the rulings could be overturned, ending an ongoing battle between environmentalists and builders that has raged for nearly 20 years.
The hotel was nearing completion in 2006, when the Junta ordered a project freeze, having discovered that it was built on protected land in the beautiful Cabo de Gata-Nijar nature park.
The project has been slammed by Greenpeace and the Junta alike for the environmental damage it is inflicting on virgin beach.
Junta officials have long complained that Azata del Sol was sold the land rights in 1999 under an ‘illegal’ contract from Carboneras, and that they should have been notified of the construction.
However, Azata del Sol has unearthed documents confirming the company who sold them the land was Parque Club El Algarrobico, a group in which the Junta organisation Soprea (Society for the Economic Advancement and Modernising of Andalucia) participated.
This greatly undermines the Junta’s ‘unawareness’ claims, as it would seem they were actively participating.
Azata del Sol adds that the Junta had the right to retract the sale within a certain margin of time, a right it did not employ until a decade later, when construction was halted in 2006.
After Azata del Sol’s case was presented, the PSOE went as far as to call the hotel ‘a little more legal.’