ARGENTINA is demanding that Spain arrests 20 alleged war criminals, including two former Cabinet ministers.
Wanted for Franco-era crimes, Argentina wants the individuals to be extradited to undergo trial.
The ex-officials, suspected of crimes committed between 1939 and 1977, include former Cabinet ministers Rodolfo Martin Villa (pictured) and Jose Utrera Molina.
Villa, 80, served as labour minister from 1975-1976 and had previously held senior posts during Franco’s regime.
He is allegedly responsible for the deaths of five workers in March 1976, who died as police tried to stop a protest in the northern city of Vitoria.
Molina – housing minister in 1973 and minister secretary general of the Franco-led National Movement party from 1974-1975 – is accused of signing the death warrant of known anarchist Salvador Puig Antich.
Antich was executed in 1974, the last use of the garrote as a method of capital punishment.
Molina is also the father-in-law of former justice minister Alberto Ruiz Gallardon, who stepped down in September this year after a failed attempt to reform Spain’s abortion laws.
Current Justice Minister Rafael Catala has insisted, however, that Spain will refuse to extradite the ex-officials, as their alleged crimes predate Spain’s 1977 Amnesty Law.
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