Things are not well in Europe despite the European Union putting a brave face on the proceedings. Much has been said about Britain leaving the European Union but Brussels has other worries. A war of words has broken out between France and Italy, a country which is already in recession, Germany is braced for tough economic times coupled with the end of Chancellor Angela Merkel and Spain is having serious problems and appears to be on course for a right-wing coalition which would also include the far-right Vox party.

These are worrying times in Spain with Catalonia being the cause of most of the problems. Pedro Sanchez attempted to break the deadlock with the announcement that he would appoint a mediator to try and negotiate a deal with the pro-independence Catalan regional government. That sparked an outcry especially as Sanchez needs the support of the pro-independence Catalan parties to get his budget through parliament in Madrid because he has a minority government. Not only did the Catalans not accept his offer of a mediator the right-wing parties launched a scathing attack claiming that he was surrendering Spain to those who seek independence. This led to Sunday's big demonstration in Madrid and the possibility of early elections because Sanchez can't get his budget through parliament. Spain is at a crossroads and there are plenty more twists and turns to come.