A technical hitch at Palma caused delays and cancellations at the three Balearic airports.

13-04-2017R.I.

A charitable start to the week
It was announced that the top-selling author Lord Jeffrey Archer and the British ambassador to Spain, Simon Manley, will be attending a major charity reception on 20 April to raise funds for the British Benevolent Fund, (BBF), one of the oldest English-speaking charities in Spain with records dating back to at least 1933.

Rocky relations
Gibraltar has been constantly in the news since Lord Howard suggested sending a task force. Last week, the chief minister Fabian Picardo said that the UK has made clear there will be no EU deal without Gibraltar. He warned in an interview that this could in effect slow down the Brexit negotiations. Picardo stated he did not rule out dialogue in an atmosphere of co-operation and of mutual respect which would deal, amongst other things, with issues of education and the environment. "All but sovereignty," he stressed.

Pressure on the vice-president
The minister for tourism and Balearic vice-president, Biel Barceló, failed to convince all MPs with his explanation about suspect contracts being handed out. Marga Prohens, the parliamentary spokesperson for the Partido Popular and now also the party’s vice-president, said that the only possible remodelling of the government required the "immediate dismissal" of both Biel Barceló and environment minister, Vicenç Vidal. Podemos’s parliamentary spokesperson, Laura Camargo, said that they would give "reasonable time" for Barceló to act and stressed that "there is a weak point in government and that is him". "Therefore, we ask him to step aside."

Chaos at the airport
The Easter holiday did not get off to a good start for ten of thousands of passengers heading in and out of Palma airport on Thursday afternoon when a technical fault in the airport control centre brought the airport to a standstill for four hours.

Seventeen flights were cancelled at Balearic airports and scores of other flights were delayed. The fault meant that at first the airport could only operate at 40 per cent capacity, with only six flights being allowed to take off and land per hour for the four hours that the system was down.

Professors suspended
Two Spanish university professors, arrested with three other suspects, were temporarily suspended by the University of the Balearic Islands after they were charged over the alleged sale of a "fake" cancer drug that had raked in more than 600,000 euros.

In a statement, police said there were "more than a dozen complaints from victims who bought this substance" - a product that had no "curative effects." One of them "paid more than 25,600 euros to treat his daughter," the police added. The three other suspects include two people who worked in the research department of a foundation.

Majorca a hit in LA
The fourth annual Location Managers Guild Awards took place in Los Angeles, with TV dramas The Night Manager, filmed on various locations in Majorca, The Crown and Oscar-winning movie La La Land among those recognised by the organisation.

Filming for The Night Manager filming took place primarily in Morocco and in Majorca, with the seventeeth-century century fort La Fortaleza - now a luxurious private home - being used for the secluded main residence of the story’s villainous arms dealer Richard Roper, played by Hugh Laurie .

Sir Richard Branson returns
Sir Richard, who has never hidden his love for Majorca, unveiled the third luxury villa on his Son Bunyola estate near Banyalbufar. Son Balagueret is spread over three floors and includes a quirky turret, a secluded central courtyard, a private heated swimming pool and views over the rest of the estate on the northwest coastline. Central to the estate is a large historic manor house, or ‘finca’, dating from the mid-1200s. The villa can sleep six adults in three bedrooms plus an additional day bed.

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