Terror victims leader says: We cannot be used

13th February 2006, Comments 0 comments

13 February 2006, VALENCIA — Amid emotional scenes, more than 300 victims of terrorism gathered for an international conference with representatives from around the world.

13 February 2006

VALENCIA — Amid emotional scenes, more than 300 victims of terrorism gathered for an international conference with representatives from around the world.

The majority of those attending were victims of the Basque terrorist organisation ETA while others were injured in the Madrid bombings, carried out by Islamic terrorists, which killed 191 in 2004.

With tears in her eyes, Mayte Pagazaurtundua, president of the Spanish Foundation for the Victims of Terrorism, told the audience that terrorists "should be destroyed".

She added that victims could not be used like political tools.

Pagazaurtundua said victims should try to maintain a cool head, despite the emotional nature of the gathering.

She also added different groups should try to maintain unity despite reported splits between various groups.

Earlier, Crown Prince Felipe opened the third International Victims of Terrorism conference, saying terrorists had never achieved anything through their attacks.

He added: "Victims of terrorism, you are not alone, not in your pain or your hopes. We are, and will always be, at your side."

People caught up in the Beslan school siege, the London train bombings and the 9/11 attacks on the US were also present.

The BBC reported victims will be encouraged to share their experiences and will receive psychological guidance.

Organisers say they want more done at an international level to help victims.

The two previous conferences were held in Madrid and Bogota, Colombia.

Discussions on Monday focused on victims of attacks abroad - including Colombia, the US, Ireland, Israel, the UK, Russia and Indonesia - and those injured in Spain's conflict with Basque separatists Eta.

On Tuesday, the conference was due to turn its attention to the survivors of the Madrid train bombings in 2004 and the psychological impact attacks have on victims.

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Subject: Spanish news

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