Expatica news

Fight against terror ‘not about party’ – Aznar

9 February 2004

MADRID – Spain’s prime minister Jose Maria Aznar insisted Monday that the fight against terrorism “is not about party nor government but it is a matter for the State”.

Aznar reinforced his message that Spain must “maintain and strengthen” the pact between all political parties against terrorism.

He made his comments to the socialist opposition leader José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero that any splits in this pact are “arms in the hands of terrorists”.

The prime minister’s comments came as he attended a ceremony Monday to present eight medals of merit.

Among those receiving the awards were ETA victims and their relatives.

The prime minister, in a clear attack on Zapatero, said “no position against terrorism is credible if it does not come from the respect of its victims”.

Aznar’s comments came as El Pais newspaper reported Monday that the ETA terrorist group was at its lowest point ever.

The newspaper, quoting security sources, said ETA faced a “crisis without precedents” after a series of high-profile arrests of its leaders in recent months.

But it reported that ETA is still thought to have bought a large arsenal of weapons from suppliers in East Europe along with 1,000 kilogrammes of dynamite stolen in France.

ETA has killed more than 800 victims during a 36-year conflict to gain independence for the Basque Country in north-west Spain.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news