Crucial week for Madrid massacre inquiry
7 October 2004, MADRID - Spanish prime minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero will appear before the parliamentary commission investigating the Madrid terrorist attack on 29 November, it was announced Thursday.
7 October 2004
MADRID - Spanish prime minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero will appear before the parliamentary commission investigating the Madrid terrorist attack on 29 November, it was announced Thursday.
The commission president Paulino Rivero said former Spanish premier Jose Maria Aznar will also appear, a week earlier.
Both appearances will be eagerly awaited as the commission has been criticised for failing to get to the bottom of the events surrounding the bombings in which 191 people were killed.
Critics have claimed that the commission lacks the investigative drive which characterised the 9/11 inquiry in the US.
They claim that it has failed to get to the bottom of what really happened and seems hampered by party-political squabbling.
The purpose of the inquiry is to examine the events surrounding the 11 March bombings.
Aznar's government lost the general election three days following the terrorist atrocity after many voters appeared to believe the former Popular Party administration refused to blame Islamic terrorists in case it would backfire on them in the elections.
Instead, they continued to blame ETA, the Basque terrorist group, in an apparent effort to deflect attention from the fact the bombings were launched because of Spain's support for the Iraq war.
Socialist party sources have said Zapatero's testimony will attempt to shed some light on the causes behind the rail attacks.
He could also contribute to help Spain to adopt measures aimed at preventing future attacks of this type.
After a drawn-out and controversial process, Aznar was finally called by the all-party commission.
Aznar himself has always said he would appear but believed he had little to contribute after other ministers in his former government gave long and detailed evidence.
Among others who will appear are the head of the European Commission on Justice, Antonio Vitorino, the Spanish head of state security, Ignacio Astarloa, and Clara Escribano, head of the Association of the Victims of 11 March.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news