Leganés (Spanish pronunciation: [le.ɣa.ˈnes]) is a city in central Spain. Part of the greater Madrid conurbation - mainly a satellite-city with a population of 186,066 (1 January 2009) it is located about 11 km southwest of the city centre.

Leganés houses a branch of the Universidad Carlos III, founded in 1989, namely the Escuela Politecnica Superior (EPS) which offers Telecommunications Engineering, Industrial Engineering and Computer Engineering, among many other degrees. Universidad Carlos III is recognized as first-class in research and teaching among other universities in Spain. The other campuses of University Carlos III are situated in Getafe and Colmenarejo, however the one located in Leganés is the only one that has a sports centre. Leganés' student accommodation building is called Fernando Abril Martorell and has a capacity of 300 students.

It is connected to Madrid via the Cercanías (train, line C5), and Metrosur, one of the lines of Metro. Leganés has 6 Metrosur stations.

Parquesur, in Leganés, built in the early 90's is currently one of the biggest shopping centres in Europe. It was completely refurbished and extended in 2005.

Leganés has a street named AC/DC in honor of the famous Australian rock band. The band visited Leganés in order to inaugurate the street. The street sign was frequently stolen until the council decided to paint it on the wall instead of replacing the sign over and over again. Nowadays, the sign can be bought at many local shops as a souvenir. There is also a street in Leganés named after the rock band Scorpions.

The break-up of Al-Andalus into the competing taifa kingdoms helped the long embattled Iberian Christian kingdoms gain the initiative. The capture of the strategically central city of Toledo in 1085 marked a significant shift in the balance of power in favour of the Christian kingdoms. Following a great Muslim resurgence in the 12th century, the great Moorish strongholds in the south fell to Christian Spain in the 13th century—Córdoba in 1236 and Seville in 1248. In the 13th and 14th centuries, the Marinid dynasty of Morocco invaded and established some enclaves on the southern coast but failed in their attempt to re-establish North African rule in Iberia and were soon driven out. After 800 years of Muslim presence in Spain, the last Nasrid sultanate of Granada, a tributary state would finally surrender in 1492 to the Catholic monarchs Queen Isabella I of Castile and King Ferdinand II of Aragon.

In the late 16th century and first half of the 17th century, Spain was confronted by unrelenting challenges from all sides. Barbary pirates, under the aegis of the rapidly growing Ottoman Empire, disrupted life in many coastal areas through their slave raids and the renewed threat of an Islamic invasion. This was at a time when Spain was often at war with France.

The Protestant Reformation dragged the kingdom ever more deeply into the mire of religiously charged wars. The result was a country forced into ever expanding military efforts across Europe and in the Mediterranean.

After a period of authoritarian rule under General Miguel Primo de Rivera (1923–1931), the king determined to seek a solution to the political situation and establish the Constitution, the king led the municipal elections on April 12, 1931. These gave a resounding victory to the Republican-Socialist candidacies in large cities and provincial capitals, well the total number of councilors was mostly monarchical. The organized demonstrations demanding the establishment of a democratic republic led the king to leave the country and the proclamation of the same on April 14 of that same year. During the Second Republic there was a great political and social upheaval, marked by a sharp radicalization of the left and the right. The moderate leaders were boycotted and each party intended to create a Spain to suit them. During the first two years, governed a coalition of republican and socialist parties. In the elections held in 1933 the right triumphed and in 1936, the left. The violent acts during this period included the burning of churches, the monarchical uprising of the militar José Sanjurjo, the Revolution of 1934 and numerous attacks against rival political leaders. On the other hand, it is also during the Second Republic when important reforms are initiated to modernize the country -democratic constitution, agrarian reform, restructuring of the army, first Statutes of Autonomy ...- and the rights of citizens as the recognition of women's right to vote, establishing universal suffrage.

On July 17 and 18, 1936, revolted against the government of the Republic, the military garrisons of the Spanish North Africa[disambiguation needed], coup d'état that triumphs only in part country. Spain was divided into two zones: one under the authority of the Republican government -in which the social revolution of 1936- and other controlled by the insurgents took place. The situation led to a Civil War, in which the general Francisco Franco was sworn in as the supreme leader of the insurgents.

In the Basque Country, moderate Basque nationalism has coexisted with a radical nationalist movement led by the armed terrorist organisation ETA. The group was formed in 1959 during Franco's rule but has continued to wage its violent campaign even after the restoration of democracy and the return of a large measure of regional autonomy.

On 23 February 1981, rebel elements among the security forces seized the Cortes in an attempt to impose a military-backed government. King Juan Carlos took personal command of the military and successfully ordered the coup plotters, via national television, to surrender.

During the 1980s the democratic restoration made possible a growing open society. New cultural movements based on freedom appeared, like La Movida Madrileña and a culture of human rights arose with Gregorio Peces-Barba. On 30 May 1982 Spain joined NATO, followed by a referendum after a strong social opposition. That year the Spanish Socialist Workers Party (PSOE) came to power, the first left-wing government in 43 years. In 1986 Spain joined the European Economic Community, which later became the European Union. The PSOE was replaced in government by the Partido Popular (PP) in 1996 after scandals around participation of the government of Felipe González in the Dirty war against ETA; at that point the PSOE had served almost 14 consecutive years in office.

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