Officials pinned the attack on EA

A car bomb blamed on Basque separatist group ETA exploded in the Basque city of San Sebastian yesterday, killing two workers just two days after the Basque government called early elections. One of the men killed by the blast was identified as a member of the hardline pro-independence party Euskal Herritarrok, which is often called ETA's political wing. A Socialist Party town councillor was believed to have been the target and he was among four people injured. Officials immediately pinned the attack on ETA, which has killed about 800 people since 1968 in its campaign to carve out an independent state in northern Spain and southwestern France. A hospital spokesman said three of the injured were undergoing surgery and the fourth was about to be released. Both the men who died were employees of a electrical components company and had been on their way to work when a car loaded with explosives was detonated by remote control. The bomb went off 40-50 metres away from the railway station where a commuter train had just arrived, police said. The attack prompted a wave of condemnation from political leaders including Juan Jose Ibarretxe, the embattled president of the Basque regional government who was forced to call early elections more than a year before his four-term was to end. “Is this the way to build a Basque homeland...murdering workers as you have done today?” Juan Jose Ibarretxe said. “I demand with every ounce of my strength that you stop killing.”