Spain elections Vox Abascal
© Reuters/Susana Vera
Spain's far-right party VOX candidate Santiago Abascal reacts during Spain's general election
Right-wingers across Europe have celebrated the success of Spain's anti-immigration Vox party which came third in the nationwide election race, doubling its previous number of seats.

A surprise surge in seats for Vox has become one of the biggest talking points of the day after the Spanish right-wing party came in third with 52 seats in the 350-seat parliament, up from 24 in April.

The ruling Socialists gained 120 seats while the conservative People's Party came in second with 88 seats. Shortly after the results were made public, leaders of like-minded parties from Europe rushed to congratulate Vox and its head, Santiago Abascal, on the huge election results.
spain election results november 2019

Marine le Pen of France's National Rally, hailed Vox's "rapid progress" and lauded Abascal "for his impressive opposition work, which is already bearing fruit after only a few years."

Matteo Salvini, leader of Italy's Lega Nord, uploaded a picture of him and Abascal and used the opportunity to contest accusations of spreading racism that surround both parties.

"Not at all racism and fascism, in Italy - as well as in Spain - we just want to live peacefully in our home" he claimed.

Vox's success also garnered a brief congratulations, expressed in Spanish, from Geert Wilders who leads the Netherlands' Party for Freedom (PVV).

Although Vox has now established itself as a major right-wing force in Spanish politics, critics note that its agenda remains rather vague.

Earlier Sunday, Abascal promised supporters to create a "patriotic alternative" to the established forces but didn't expand on that.