By Chris Buscombe

SPOKESPERSON for the opposition Partido Popular, Miquel Ramis, yesterday called for all political parties to start seriously thinking about how to tackle gang warfare following the fatal stabbing of 16-year-old Eusebio Ebulabate, originally from Equatorial Guinea, last Sunday at the hands of opposing gang members.

Speaking yesterday at a press conference, Ramis emphasised the need to “use all possible means to put to a halt” the prevailing problem which, he said, is present throughout the Balearics. He pointed to the large quantities of news reports that have been posted on the internet about the incident, and lamented the fact that such a story had its foundations in Majorca. “What is happening?”, asked the spokesman, expressing his disbelief and sadness over the current situation. He identified many of the youths involved in Palma's gangs as “misled young people” whose values have grown to be at odds with that of Spanish society's. He invited all parties to throw down the conceit of political debate on the issue and combine efforts in order to try and solve the rising problem. He also urged individual schools and colleges to take every step possible to prevent teenagers bringing in potential weapons to school so as to stop any similar incidents, instead of “acting as if nothing has happened”. Ramis stressed that he, for one, promises to “completely preoccupy” himself with the issue, and warned that the increasing talk of “blood for blood” reprisals is highly alarming “All parties must now take some time to reflect on this situation. It is shocking,” Ramis added, before questioning whether “this is the way of tomorrow”. He urged his fellow politicians to “tackle the problem with absolute rigour” and called upon the Balearic Government, the central Government's delegation and the Palma City Council to convene and draw up a suitable plan to face the problem “front on”.

There have been a large number of threats posted on internet blogs since the stabbing which have indicated that there will be revenge attacks by members of the G.A. gang- with whom Eusebio was thought to have connections- on members of the originally Dominican Republic-based Bling Bling gang - to which the two suspects in last Sunday's attack both belong. Dominican Republic neighbours of Eusebio's family have said that they are living in fear as a result of the threats, and one family have already made plans to return to their home country until the threats subside.

Police have said that they will increase their presence throughout Palma this weekend for fear of more attacks. The threat of gang violence is one which Ramis stressed is very real, and this move is hoping to prevent reactionary incidents borne out of vengeance.


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