Expatica news

Verhofstadt condemns ‘barbarous’ Spanish bombs

11 March 2004

BRUSSELS – Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt on Thursday condemned the “barbarous” bomb attacks in Spain, which left at least 186 people dead and over 1000 injured.

“It is clear that these are barbarous acts that from which we must learn a single lesson: the fight against terrorism must continue relentlessly,” Verhofstatdt told journalists.

“We must do that by increasing international co-operation but especially our co-operation inside Europe. I think far more efforts need to be made at European level to fight terrorism,” he added.

Belgian Foreign Minister Louis Michel also strongly condemned the attacks. Michel told journalists that he had contacted his Spanish counterpart Ana de Palacio and offered his deepest sympathy to the families of the dead and injured and to the Spanish government.

The bombs exploded around 7.30am in a commuter train arriving at Atocha station in Madrid, a bustling hub for subway, commuter and long-distance trains in Spain’s capital.

Blasts also rocked trains or platforms at El Pozo and Santa Eugenia, two stations on a commuter line leading to Atocha.

The government said there were four blasts altogether.

No-one claimed responsibility for the blasts, but officials immediately blamed the Basque separatist organisation ETA.

The death toll would make Thursday the deadliest day ever in decades of attacks by ETA.

[Copyright Expatica News 2004]

Subject: Belgian news