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Spain: Franco still rules at Spanish restaurant00:48

Spain: Franco still rules at Spanish restaurant

Spain, Almuradiel
February 25, 2013 at 11:58 GMT +00:00 · Published

Former Spanish authoritarian military leader Francisco Franco continues to live on at a restaurant in the town of Almuradiel, in southern Spain.

Called Casa Pepe, the building's exterior is painted bright gold and red, evoking the Spanish flag. Mementos of the Franco era adorn the walls inside, including busts and portraits of the former dictator.

Casa Pepe, which serves traditional Spanish food, celebrates its 90th anniversary on Saturday. Civil servants, police and military personnel, many of whom salute Franco upon entering, are among the establishment's most loyal customers.

Juan Navarro, owner of Casa Pepe, said: "For me, Franco is the best thing that happened to Spain, because with Franco we had freedom and safety. Four or five years after Franco died, when Felipe Gonzalez and his socialists came to power, the reds, came the Spanish disaster."

Franco, who ruled Spain from 1936 until his death in 1975, continues to divide opinion in Spain. He came to power during the Spanish Civil War while serving as the Generalissimo of the victorious Nationalist faction. He was accused of harsh rule, imprisoning his political opponents in concentration camps and introducing strict censorship. But he also oversaw rapid industrialisation that won him the support of many Spaniards.

Spain: Franco still rules at Spanish restaurant00:48
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Description

Former Spanish authoritarian military leader Francisco Franco continues to live on at a restaurant in the town of Almuradiel, in southern Spain.

Called Casa Pepe, the building's exterior is painted bright gold and red, evoking the Spanish flag. Mementos of the Franco era adorn the walls inside, including busts and portraits of the former dictator.

Casa Pepe, which serves traditional Spanish food, celebrates its 90th anniversary on Saturday. Civil servants, police and military personnel, many of whom salute Franco upon entering, are among the establishment's most loyal customers.

Juan Navarro, owner of Casa Pepe, said: "For me, Franco is the best thing that happened to Spain, because with Franco we had freedom and safety. Four or five years after Franco died, when Felipe Gonzalez and his socialists came to power, the reds, came the Spanish disaster."

Franco, who ruled Spain from 1936 until his death in 1975, continues to divide opinion in Spain. He came to power during the Spanish Civil War while serving as the Generalissimo of the victorious Nationalist faction. He was accused of harsh rule, imprisoning his political opponents in concentration camps and introducing strict censorship. But he also oversaw rapid industrialisation that won him the support of many Spaniards.

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