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Abstaining Spaniards 'donate' their votes to resident foreigners
12 November 2019 @ 13:26

OVER 300 Spaniards who did not intend to vote yesterday (Sunday) 'donated' their ballot to another 300 foreign residents, many of whom are children born in Spain to expat parents.

The campaign was set up by Safia El-Aaddam, who is in her early 20s and born in Spain to a Moroccan couple who had emigrated there.

She condemns the 'institutional racism' that exists in practically every country and which prevents anyone other than a national from voting in a general election.

Safia is one of thousands of young adults born in Spain but who do not have Spanish nationality because of the 'delays, red tape and cost' that she and others like her face when attempting to become citizens.

It costs around €1,000 to become a Spanish citizen, and proof of residence exceeding 10 years – two for those married to a Spaniard or a native of a former colony or of Portugal – must be supplied along with reports from police to show a clean record, and two exams passed.

These are not too onerous – the Spanish language test is at level A2, about the equivalent of a good O-level or GCSE standard, and the 'culture, law and society' exam is 25 multiple-choice questions, of which at least 15 must be answered correctly.

But Safia, who has been trying to obtain Spanish nationality since she was 18, says she flatly refuses to take exams proving she speaks the language of and knows the basics about the only country she has ever lived in, 'on principle'.



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