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Not A Pretty Sight

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A car bomb exploded yesterday at 13h40 in Palmanova (Calvià), Mallorca, claiming two fatalities and shattering the tourists’ holiday dreams. Two Guardia Civil officers on duty were killed in the monstruous attack, 27 year old Diego Salvá Lezaun, and Carlos Enrique Sáenz de Tejada García, age 28. A second car bomb was later found nearby but was detonated safely.

It is widely assumed that the Basque ETA (Euskadi Ta Askatasuna = Basque Homeland and Freedom) organisation may be behind yesterday’s killings. The bombing in Palmanova was the second attack in Spain linked to ETA in less than 36 hours. Wednesday night, a car bomb exploded near Burgos in mainland Spain causing injuries to 65 victims. No lives were lost in Burgos, luckily.

Today, July 31st, marks the 50th anniversary of the foundation of the Basque separatist group ETA. The Basque conflict started during the Franco years as a consequence of severe repression by the fascist regime such as the attacks on Durango and Gernika. The Basque homeland extends from the Northeast of Spain to the Southwest of France. The severity of the armed conflict in Spain can perhaps be compared with the troubles in Northern Ireland and the IRA.

The attack was the fifth ETA assault carried out in Mallorca since 1977, if indeed ETA was behind this latest attack. ETA normally has a habit of issuing warnings before any massive attacks but no such warning was received before yesterday’s bombing. Thankfully, the previous ETA terror strikes in Mallorca had not resulted in any loss of life. One of the previous ETA assaults in Mallorca had been an attempt to assassinate King Juan Carlos I. The Spanish royal family usually spends their summer vacations in Mallorca. The royals are expected on the island any day now.

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The photos were borrowed from the Internet. Thanks are due to Dany Cardona/Reuters as well as to AFP. Muchas gracias.

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