Saturday, March 13, 2004

Along Comes a Tape

Aznar and his PP are in trouble, their lies are out there for all of us to see. This note was published by Yahoo News:

Tape Claims al-Qaida Tied to Spain Blasts
1 minute ago Add Top Stories - AP to My Yahoo!
MADRID, Spain - Spain's interior minister said Sunday a videotape has been discovered claiming al-Qaida carried out the Madrid terrorist attacks and threatening more, but that he could not verify the veracity of the claim. Earlier, Spain arrested three Moroccans and two Indians in connection with the attacks Thursday that killed 200 people and wounded 1,500.

Interior Minister Angel Acebes said a man identifying himself as the military spokesman of Al-Qaida in Europe claimed the group was responsible for the bombings.

"We declare our responsibility for what happened in Madrid exactly 2 1/2 years after the attacks on New York and Washington," said the man, according to a government translation of the tape, which was recorded in Arabic. "It is a response to your collaboration with the criminals Bush and his allies."

Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar has been a staunch supporter of the U.S.-led war in Iraq (news - web sites).

A London-based Arabic newspaper had earlier received a claim of responsibility in al-Qaida's name; but the government has been reluctant to blame the Islamic group, saying the Basque separatist group ETA was also a suspect. ETA denied responsibility.

Speaking at a hastily called post-midnight news conference at the interior ministry, Acebes said authorities could not confirm the claim was genuine. He said the videotape was discovered after an Arabic-speaking man called a Madrid TV station and said where it could be found.

A statement from the ministry said the speaker was identified as Abu Dujan al Afghani. Acebes said the man was not known to law enforcement authorities in Spain, and that they were checking the tape's authenticity.

The man threatened further attacks in the video.

"This is a response to the crimes that you caused in the world, and specifically in Iraq and Afghanistan (news - web sites), and there will be more if God wills it," the man said, according to the Spanish government's translation.

Thursday's attacks in Madrid came just days before Sunday's general elections in Spain. At demonstrations Saturday, some protesters said they believed the ruling party was playing down the possible link between the bombings and Spain's role in Iraq, fearing it would hurt the party's chances in the election.

Acebes, speaking at a news conference on Saturday, said the five suspects were all arrested around Madrid. A spokesman for the Moroccan government identified the three Moroccans as as Jamal Zougam, 30; Mohamed Bekkali, 31, a mechanic; and Mohamed Chaoui, 34. All three are from northern Morocco, but the government gave no further details about them.

"One might have connections with Moroccan extremist groups. But it is still very early to establish to what degree," Acebes said. He did not name any group.

Asked whether the Basque separatist group ETA is still considered a suspect, Acebes said: "We must not rule anything out."

.... ... .

No comments:

Post a Comment