IN this space a week ago I wrote that I had been touched by the sense of solidarity in Spain for the victims of the London bombings. A week later I find that once again I need to return to this subject and once again express my gratitude. I don't think any other country in the world has shown their solidarity to such a degree as Spain has done over the last eight days. While Spain is not considered to be one of Britain's closest allies I have been deeply touched at the reaction of Spaniards from the leader of the Balearic government Jaume Matas to the waiter in my local bar. Perhaps by a cruel twist of fate the people of Britain and Spain are now united more closely than ever before because they have both been victims of terrible terrorist attacks. Spain was one of the first countries to offer their police forces to help Scotland Yard and it was quite incredible that so many people took part in the two minutes silence for the bomb victims on Thursday. Just six days before the Balearics had come to a standstill as Spain marked its respect in its very own way. On Monday the British ambassador to Madrid Stephen Wright presided over a special ceremony in which the Spanish Royal Guard played the British national anthem in their changing of the guard parade. Prince Felipe, the heir to the Spanish throne, was one of the first people to sign the book of condolence at the British Embassy in Madrid. When things start to return to normal and the people of London start to move-on after the horrific attacks I sincerely believe that Britain should pay tribute to Spain. It is shown that it is a true friend to Britain, and not even the centuries old dispute over Gibraltar, is going to stop the Spanish standing shoulder to shoulder with Britain, slightly higher than most other countries.
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