ETA 'set to attack again soon' warn security forces

4th June 2007, Comments 0 comments

4 June 2007, MADRID- Security services warned ETA was poised to launch a new wave of bomb attacks in the run-up to the tourist season.

4 June 2007

MADRID- Security services warned ETA was poised to launch a new wave of bomb attacks in the run-up to the tourist season.

Meanwhile, ETA, which detonated a deadly car-bomb in December, has reportedly sent extortion letters to Basque and Navarre business executives in recent weeks, news reports said Sunday.

Jose Manuel Ayesa, president of the Navarre Business Confederation, was quoted in Basque news and information channel EITB as saying he was "aware of a minimum of nine letters" sent out in May.

Images of a letter, asking a business to pay a "revolutionary tax," was shown on state television channel TVE1. Another letter asking for €150,000 (US$201,540) was shown on daily newspaper El Mundo's Web site.

Ayesa said that though the letters conveyed a threat of extortion they were written in "a less aggressive tone than that employed by ETA in previous deliveries."

ETA has killed more than 800 people since 1968 in an often violent bid to establish an independent Basque state in northeast Spain. It has regularly sent letters to businesses demanding payment.

The practice had eased off over the past year as ETA maintained a cease-fire called in March 2006.

The cease-fire ended when ETA exploded a massive bomb which completely demolished a car park in Madrid's airport on Dec. 30, killing two Ecuadorean immigrants who were resting in cars as they awaited the arrival of relatives and friends.

The bomb derailed a tentative peace process in which Spain's Socialist government said it was prepared to hold talks to bring about the complete dissolution of the group.

No one was available at Navarre Business Confederation headquarters in the northeastern city Pamplona to comment on the reports.

ETA's name is a Basque-language acronym for Basque Homeland and Freedom.

[Copyright AP with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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