Argentina’s Javier Milei takes a dig at Pedro Sanchez after Spain’s transport minister suggested the far-right firebrand was on drugs

A DIPLOMATIC row has erupted after Spain’s transport minister accused far-right Argentine president Javier Milei of consuming drugs during last year’s election campaign.

At a panel discussion in Salamanca on Friday, Oscar Puente, the Spanish transport minister and member of the socialist PSOE party, suggested that Milei had ingested ‘substances’ during last year’s presidential election which saw the hard-right firebrand beat Sergio Massa, a representative for the Peronist status quo, with over 55% of the vote.

The spat continued on Saturday after Milei’s office released an official statement in response accusing Pedro Sanchez, the Spanish Prime Minister, of bringing ‘poverty and death’ to the country with his ‘socialist policies’.

READ MORE: Leader of Spain’s far-right Vox party sparks outrage after saying that ‘the time will come when the people will want to hang Pedro Sanchez by his feet’

Spain’s transport minister Oscar Puente made the accusation at a debate on Friday. Credit: Wikimedia Commons

The statement further attacked Sanchez by saying he has ‘more important problems to worry about, such as the accusations of corruption against his wife’, which saw the PSOE leader take five days off official duties a fortnight ago for a ‘period of reflection’ to contemplate his future.

The five-paragraph long rebuke also accused Sanchez of ‘endangering Spanish women by allowing illegal immigration’ and ‘endangering the unity of the nation by forming pacts with separatists’, a reference to Sanchez’s reliance on the support of Basque and Catalan separatist parties to prop up his coalition government.

Spain’s foreign ministry quickly denounced Milei’s criticisms with their own statement, saying: “The Spanish government categorically rejects the unfounded words…which do not reflect the relations between the two countries and their fraternal people”.

Milei’s comments were publicly supported by Isabel Diaz Ayuso, the controversial Partido Popular President of the Community of Madrid, who labelled Sanchez as a ‘Peronist’ and accused his government of ‘disrespecting the president voted in by the Argentine people’.

Meanwhile former Argentine president, Alberto Fernandez, released a statement on X in support of the Spanish government, commenting that ‘Argentina has the largest community of Spanish immigrants in the world’.

The public fallout comes less than two weeks before Milei travels to Spain for an event organised by the far-right opposition party Vox.

Relations between Argentina and Spain have cooled significantly since Milei’s election thanks to the wide political differences between his divisive populist brand of governance and Spain’s coalition led by the left-wing PSOE.

Sanchez can find solace in the fact he isn’t the only world leader to have been on the receiving end of Milei’s razor-sharp tongue – the former university lecturer and economist called Brazil’s president, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, an ‘angry communist, described Mexico’s president, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, as ‘ignorant’, and referred to Colombian president, Gustavo Petro, as a ‘terrorist murderer’.

Santiago Abascal and Javier Milei
Javier Milei with Santiago Abascal, leader of far-right Vox. Credit: X/santiagoabascal

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