Ahead of the European elections on June 6-9, the annual Spring Festival hosted by Spain's Podemos has transformed into a rallying point for Europe’s hard-left parties. EPA-EFE/Kiko Huesca

News Vote 24

Europe’s hard-left parties unite in opposition to war


Ahead of the European Parliament elections on June 6-9, the annual Spring Festival in Madrid hosted by the Spanish Podemos party became a rallying point for Europe’s hard-left parties and their no-to-war message.

The May 25 event showcased a united front comprising French party La France Insoumise, Belgium’s Workers’ Party (PTB), and Italy’s Sinistra Italiana (Italian Left), which collectively advocated for peace and criticised the European Union’s position on the conflicts in Ukraine and Israel.

In a video message, left-wing political leaders expressed solidarity with their Spanish allies, reinforcing their collective push for peace.

Nicola Fratoianni of the Italian Left party said the future of Europe depended on the outcome of the EP elections. He called for an EU that would choose peace and diplomacy over war.

Marc Botenga, the PTB’s EP elections lead candidate, emphasised what he said was the urgency of their mission: “In these times of social urgency and belligerence, the transformative Left must strengthen itself to meet today’s multiple challenges.”

La France Insoumise lead candidate Manon Aubry said: “We need a strong Left in the European Union to have a strong voice when it comes to peace.”

She went further, condemning Israel’s actions and the EU’s war policies: “We need to stop the genocidal state of Israel with a brave Left that opposes the drift toward war and austerity in Europe.”

“Our Left group in the EU Parliament has been the only one that I have been advocating … for a ceasefire in Isreal and prohibited to send arms in Israel,” she added.

Javier Sánchez Serna, a regional co-ordinator for Podemos, criticised what he said was the EU’s recent shift in priorities: “The European Union has gone from promoting the ‘green’ transition to gambling everything on war and its escalation.”

As political dynamics evolve in the EU, with potential new alliances on the Right reshaping the power balance in the European Parliament, Podemos and its allies have vowed to act as an alternative voice.

Showcasing their vision rooted in peace, the Left aims to rally voters to their cause in the EP elections.

The hard-left has been particularly vocal in its anti-war stance, pressuring their respective national governments to take more concrete action.

This has significant diplomatic consequences in Spain. Israeli Foreign Minister, Israel Katz sent a diplomatic note to the Spanish Embassy in Israel, prohibiting the Spanish consulate in Jerusalem from conducting consular activities or providing consular services to residents of the Palestinian Authority.

“Those who reward Hamas and attempt to establish a Palestinian terror state will have no contact with the Palestinians,” said Katz.

“The days of the Inquisition are over. Those who harm us, we will harm in return,” he added.

This statement comes after Spain’s decision on May 17 to ban vessels “carrying weapons for Isreal” from its ports. This decision from Spain’s Foreign minister was pushed by  Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez’s coalition partners, the left-wing Sumar, and the Podemos.