Monday, 10 April 2017

Catalan socialist Carme Chacón dies at 46

CNA

Barcelona (CNA).- Former Spanish Minsiter and one of the most charismatic faces of the Catalan Socialist Party´, Carme Chacón, died this Sunday aged 46. She suffered from a heart disease since she was a child. Chacón was Spain’s first female ministers during Zapatero’s term of office in 2008, after shortly being Spanish Parliament’s VP and Spanish Minister for Housing. Chacon was a leadership contender for the main opposition Socialist party (PSOE) in 2014 but narrowly lost before Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba. In 2016 she stepped down from PSOE’s Secretary for International Relations. “She left nobody indifferent”, said Catalan Socialist Party leader, Miquel Iceta. “Today we feel more orphan, more lonely and sadder”, he added. 

“My pulse is 35 beats per minute and my heart is upside down,” Chacón explained in an interview with newspaper ‘La Vanguardia’ in 2015, adding that she looked at “each day as a gift”. In the interview, she also talked about her career and political milestones. Chacón, who was the first female Spanish Minister of Defense, repeatedly traveled to Afghanistan to visit the troops there, and during several trips she was visibly pregnant. “Many soldiers thought that I couldn’t do the same task as men and I wanted to prove they were wrong,” she said. 

In 2008, she was PSOE’s candidate for Barcelona. Under the motto ‘If you don’t go, they will come back,’ the Spanish Socialist Party called for high voter turnout in the Spanish Election to avoid another victory from the conservative People’s Party. Indeed, in that election, PSOE’s leader José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero was elected Spanish President and the Catalan Socialist won its best result in any Spanish elections to date, with 25 MPs in the Spanish Parliament.

The news saddened the whole Spanish political spectrum

Many representatives from the Catalan executive, the PSOE and the Spanish Government have expressed their condolences on Twitter and admitted to be by “devastated” by the news.

"Saddened by the premature departure of Carme Chacon. Today all Socialists mourn, with pain and helplessness," the party said on its Twitter page. Catalan President, Carles Puigdemot, said he was “in shock” on his Twitter page and Catalan Government Spokeswoman, Neus Munté, added that Chacón “was too young to leave”.

  • Carme_Chacon_ACN

  • PSC's candidate for Barcelona, Carme Chacón during the press conference at CNA headquarters (by ACN)