World Bulletin / News Desk
Madrid regional president Esperanza Aguirre, an influential Spanish politician and a leader of the conservative wing of the ruling centre-right People's Party (PP), resigned on Monday in a surprise announcement.
Aguirre has been a huge vote-getter for the PP in populous Madrid, and was the first woman politician in Spain to be seen as a possible future president.
She has also clashed publicly with Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, who has moved the party in a more moderate direction.
Aguirre announced in 2011 that she had breast cancer but on Monday said her health was only part of a decision to end her three-decade political career.
"I want to spend more time with my grandchildren," said Aguirre, who has been president of the Community of Madrid, the region that includes the country's capital, since 2003.
She was Spain's first female head of the Senate, its first female regional president and also served as education minister.
She brought bilingual English-Spanish teaching to Madrid schools and opened many hospitals in the region.
Aguirre denied her resignation was linked to her recent public disagreement with Rajoy over the early release of terminal cancer patient Jesus Maria Uribetxeberria Bolinaga, a convicted kidnapper from violent Basque separatist group ETA.
Rajoy had said he had to follow the law on the release, but Aguirre and other hardliners had said a way should have been found to keep him in prison.
In recent months Aguirre has championed Madrid as the site for a Las Vegas Sands casino.
The capital beat rival Barcelona in a charm offensive, which saw the project, expected to be worth up to 17 billion euros ($22 billion) in investment, awarded to Madrid earlier this month.
Theresa May attended first EU summit since she became UK prime minister
The protests were called to demonstrate against the government of President Joseph Kabila who many in Congo fear is manoeuvering to stay in office indefinitely beyond the end of his term in December.
"It is incomprehensible and unacceptable, it was a mistake," Renzi told Italian radio.
The hold up also threatens to torpedo next week's planned visit to Brussels by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to sign the deal.
Greek govt says the Syrian nationals returned to Turkey had not requested asylum
Decision follows 2015 row over South African visit by Sudanese president sought by ICC on war crimes charges
As Iraqi forces close in on Mosul, militants use civilians as ‘human shields’, train children in suicide-bombing techniques
Trump cast the United States into uncharted political waters by suggesting he may not recognize the result of the November 8 presidential election and could launch a legal challenge if Hillary Clinton wins.
Northern Iraqi city sees car-bomb, suicide attacks by extrem group
The chief of NATO has said that Russia's only aircraft carrier may possibly be used in strikes in Aleppo
Atheel al-Nujaifi allowed Turkey to establish military presence in northern Iraq, judicial officials allege
No group claims responsibility for the deadly attacks
European Council summit in Brussels covering migration, relations with Russia, and situation in Syria
Armed militants have attacked government buildings in Kirkuk
Hundreds of police officers in France have continued their protests against violence against police