Spain will only succeed as a country if it can overcome regional tensions and division and offer a positive vision of co-existence, the country’s foreign minister has said.
Josep Borrell claimed the narrative about Spain and Spanish history had been captured by nationalists both regionally and at a country-wide level who are on the ‘wrong side of history’.
Spain has not had anyone capable of writing its story in terms of its positive contribution to the world, the minister added.
He was speaking at the presentation of a new book by diplomat Luis Francisco Martinez Montes called Spain, A Global History.
Martinez Montes’ book comes as part of a Foreign Ministry strategy to promote Spain’s image abroad. It discusses the country’s contribution to a host of areas including religion, language and economics.
Borrell said the book was not an exercise in ‘vainglory’ but was a celebration of the country’s achievements throughout its history.
Spain needed to counter a ‘pre-modern’ and ‘authoritarian’ image pushed by critics following the 2008 recession, the eurozone crisis and more recently the Catalan independence row, Borrell said.