ETA called off a 14-month truce in December 1999, accusing Madrid of intransigence. Above, the car bomb attack.

A Spanish navy cook was killed when a bomb attached to the underside of his car exploded in the Basque city of San Sebastian yesterday in the latest attack blamed on the armed separatist group ETA. The bomb containing three kilograms (seven lb) of explosives blasted Ramon Diaz Garcia through the vehicle's roof, state radio said. The civilian employee, 51, worked as a cook for the navy in the coastal city. He was married with two children. “What motive can there be to kill a cook...?” Interior Minister Jaime Mayor Oreja said. “Every killing is unjustifiable but this victim makes that so evident. A cook who was simply on his way to his kitchen to prepare food.” Politicians immediately pinned the attack on ETA which claimed 23 killings in 2000, its bloodiest year since 1992 in its armed campaign for an independent Basque state straddling northern Spain and southwestern France. If its responsibility is confirmed, the attack in Guipuzcoa province, a pro-independence Basque stronghold, would be ETA's first killing in 2001. There were two similar but failed bombing attempts in northern Spain this week. ETA, which stands for Basque Homeland and Freedom in the Basque language, has killed about 800 people since 1968. The group targets politicians, judges and members of the security forces which it sees as representatives of an “occupying Spanish state”. It also regularly kills military and prison service workers and councillors unprotected by bodyguards. The Workers Commissions (CCOO), a leading Spanish trade union, asked why ETA killed Diaz Garcia, a longstanding member. “ETA has cut down the life of a cook. How will they plan to justify that to society? Will they call him a dangerous agent of the Spanish state?” the CCOO said in a statement. In December, an ETA bomb killed a plumber who was also a town councillor for Spain's Popular Party in Catalonia. Television pictures showed a white car blown apart by the blast and surrounded by debris in the middle of a street. Two passers-by were treated for slight injuries. “This is a cold-blooded killing that will achieve nothing,” Public Administration Minister Jesus Posada told state radio.


To be able to write a comment, you have to be registered and be logged in.

* Mandatory fields

Currently there are no comments.