OVER 1200 INJURED, AND MORE THAN 192 KILLEDBy Humphrey Carter
BALEARIC president Jaume Matas yesterday condemned the worst massacre in the history of terrorism and called on everyone to unite in the fight against terrorists. Last night Matas was locked in talks with representatives from all the local political parties, unions and social organisations called together to discuss yesterday's shocking events. Prior to that he had held a special Balearic cabinet meeting to discuss the various anti-terrorism protest events which are to take place over the next three days of national mourning. Within hours of the blasts, on behalf of the government and the Balearic public, Matas sent a message of solidarity and condolences to the victims and their families. He also sent telegrams of support to the Mayor of Madrid, Alberto Ruiz-Gallardón, and the president of the Madrid regional government, Esperanza Aguirre. Flanked by his vice-president Rosa Estarás and central government delegate to the Balearics, Miquel Ramis, Matas said that the sole aim of the terrorists was to cause as much harm to as many people as possible. This was an attack against all of us, against our way of life and against our democratic system coming just two days ahead of the general elections. It's been the biggest attack on our society and what we believe in to date, he added. But, they're not going to frighten us, they're not going to shut us up, Matas proclaimed. Neither the terrorists not their supporters will defeat us, he said before calling on the State, the security forces and justice to be allowed to do their job, catch the terrorists and bring an end to this nightmare. The Balearic leader expressed his 100 percent support and backing for the Spanish government and praised the public for its out-pouring of solidarity yesterday. He congratulated all those who took part in many of the impromptu protests, minute silences, the schools which called off classes and, in particular, the hundreds of people who rallied to the call to give blood. This is the kind of response which restores one's faith in human nature and shows that the spirit of solidarity is alive and well here in Majorca, Ibiza, Minorca and Formentera, said Matas. There is a huge sense of pain and hurt here in the Balearics, as there is across the country; local politicians and the public are also very angry. But all this does is bring us closer together in the fight against terrorism and strengthens our belief in the law and justice, he said yesterday.
Matas also said that the terrorists must not be allowed to disrupt Sunday's general elections. The vote is one of the fundamental rights of a democratic society, he said and the Balearic leader called on everyone to get out on Sunday and use their right to vote for what they believe in.
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