EUROPEAN UNION, SPAIN & BASQUE COUNTRY

EUROPEAN UNION

Definition

What is the European Union? Is the association of European nations formed in 1993 for the purpose of achieving political and economic integration.

Who are memberships? Currently it’s formed by 28 members (Spain included), but in 2016 the United Kingdom voted by referendum to leave the European Union (the famous “brexit“). Some others are still waiting for their membership approval, like Turkey (see the complete list). 

So… who can join the UE? They can be members of the UE those countries who:

  • Are european
  • Respect the democratic values of the EU (rule of law, human rights, democratic elections, separation of powers…)
  • Have a functioning market economy and the capacity to compite with the UE market economy
  • Are able to take the obligations of membership

The UE acts like a big state, with its democratic pillars:

separation-of-powers-in-the-eu

*Rule of law in the EU: every action taken by the EU is founded on treaties that have been approved voluntarily and democratically by all EU member countries. (more information)


classification-spainSPANISH STATE

Spain in the EU

After Francisco Franco dictators death in 1975, Foreign Minister Marcelino Oreja officially presented in Brussels Spain’s application for accession to the European Economic Community (UE’s previous institution), and Spain was officially integrated into the EEC on 1 January 1986. Since then, Spain has seen huge economic, social and political transformations.

Classification

EXERCISE: Analyze the spanish Constitution of 1978 to classify Spain according to differents criteria.

DEMOCRACY

EXERCISE: Analyze the spanish democracy according to the Constitution of 1978.

EXERCISE: What is the composition of the current Congress and Government?

EXERCISE: Now think about what you analyzed and answer: is Spain in the practice a true and fair democracy?

MONARCHY

What type of monarchy is Spain? Which are the functions of the Head of State? Click on the picture to figure it out.parlamentary-monarchy

SECULAR STATE

EXERCISE: Think about what you analyzed in the spanish Constitution about this: is Spain in the practice a real secular state?

DECENTRALISED STATE

Even though Spain has a central government located in Madrid and a general law-code, its territories also have their limited selfgoverments (autonomous communities), with their own limited law-codes (statutes). These autonomous regions are in turn, divided in provinces which are divided in local governments as well, therefore  we can conclude that the power is decentralised.

EXERCISE: Learn about spanish territorial division


EUSKAL HERRIA

EXERCISE: Learn about basque territorial division

Basque Autonomous Community

Definition

What is the Basque Autonomous Community? Is one of the regions that form Euskal Herria.

  • Is based on the Statute of Autonomy of the Basque Country, ratified by referendum on 25 October 1979.
  • As it is a region with selfgovernment, it has its own parliament (elected by the basque people), president (“lehendakaria“, elected by the basque parliament)  and judicial court.
  • It’s divided in three provinces (Bizkaia, Gipuzkoa and Araba) specifically designated “historical territories“, with their own governmet institutions (Batzar Nagusiak and Foru Aldundiak).

separation-powers-eh

 

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