Row over Zapatero gaff on ETA airport bombing

11th January 2007, Comments 0 comments

11 January 2007, MADRID — José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero was at the centre of a political storm on Thursday after he referred to the Madrid bombing as a "tragic accident".

11 January 2007

MADRID — José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero was at the centre of a political storm on Thursday after he referred to the Madrid bombing as a "tragic accident".

The reference, which was quickly corrected, was picked up on by political opponents as insensitive, given the strength of feeling after the car bombing which killed two Ecuadorian immigrants and left 16 injured last month.

At a meeting of regional politicians, Zapatero said: "Given that just a few days ago we had a tragic accident, a tragic terrorist attack at Barajas airport, I wanted to propose that we show our energetic condemnation (of the attack) and also our profound solidarity to the victims."

Sources close to Zapatero said it was a "lapse which was immediately corrected".

His spokesman, Fernando Moraleda, said in no way would the prime minister refer to the attack as an "accident".

But Pedro Sanz, regional premier of La Rioja who was at the meeting, said Zapatero had referred to a "tragic accident" but had failed to say sorry.

It is the second time the Spanish premier has made the same slip.

One day before the Madrid airport bombing, he referred to "lethal accidents" instead of "lethal attacks" during a press conference.

The incident was dismissed by Zapatero's aides.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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