In the end, Spanish foreign minister Josep Borrell will not leave Madrid for Brussels. The number one candidate on PSOE's list in the European election has decided to reject his MEP seat. Even if his was Spain's most voted list on 26th May, Borrell will continue to be Spain's foreign affairs minister. He will not even attend next Tuesday's inauguration of the European Parliament. He made his decision public this morning in a press conference in Brussels.
In this way, Borrell has rejected returning to the European Parliament, which he was president of between 2004 and 2007. In an interview with Eldiario.es he had said his decision to stand for the European election was because it was "different". He stated: "over the last five years, national-populism, the anti-European feelings of the far right and far left have grown. It is a time for politics in the most noble sense of the word".
His resignation has been made public less than one week before the inauguration of the European Parliament, in the midst of the negotiations for the allocation of high-ranking positions in the European Commission which are taking place between the main European political groups. There had been speculation around the possibility of Borrell being proposed by PSOE for a position of European Commissioner.