Pressure on Spanish PM to explain Swiss bank money

Spain's Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy pauses during a news conference at the Moncloa Palace in Madrid Friday Aug. 3, 2012. Rajoy appeared before the press after a government cabinet meeting to sum up the government's first 6 months in office. (AP Photo/Paul White) Paul White

MADRID Spanish opposition parties are piling pressure on conservative Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, demanding he appear before Parliament to explain how a former governing party treasurer amassed 22 million euro ($29 million) in a Swiss bank account, the latest corruption scandal to rock the recession-hit country.

The Socialist opposition party and other groups are to petition Tuesday for Rajoy's appearance but the governing Popular Party's absolute majority means it can reject the proposal.

Although no arrests have been made or charges filed, the scandal is affecting Rajoy, who is demanding great sacrifices of Spaniards as the country battles to emerge from recession with 25 percent unemployment.

Opinion polls show Spaniards have little faith in their political parties, while some 300 politicians are reported to be implicated in corruption cases across the country.

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