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Panama Papers leak claims another victim; Spanish minister quits

Speed News Desk | Updated on: 15 April 2016, 17:33 IST

Spain's minister for industry, energy, and tourism has become the latest victim of the Panama Papers leak. Jose Manuel Soria resigned on Friday after his name was linked to offshore companies set up to evade taxes.

In a statement issued to the media, Soria said, "Following a conversation with the prime minister, I conveyed my irrevocable decision to resign from the functions that I was tasked with since December 21 as minister of industry, energy and tourism."

According to reports, Soria's name was linked to an offshore company in the British Island of Jersey, though his actual name hasn't appeared in the leaked documents, identifying him as the director of a firm.

Two Spanish news outlets claimed they have documents proving that the minister headed an offshore firm along with his brother.

It is being said the minister stepped down to limit any damage to the current government, the People's Party.

Earlier this month, Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson resigned as Iceland's Prime Minister after his name appeared in the Panama Papers. Names of Pakistan's Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his kin have also appeared in these leaks.

Reacting to Soria's resignation, Pakistani politician Imran Khan called for Sharif's resignation too.

He tweeted, "Spanish minister resigns in wake of Panama Leaks & no inquiry committee was needed as he lost all moral authority to hold the position. Why doesn't our PM realise that in a democracy once a PM loses moral authority he cannot hold that office?"

First published: 15 April 2016, 17:33 IST