Thursday, July 30, 2009

Bomb kills two Spanish police officers

A little more than a day after a car bomb injured more than 40 people in Burgos, a second device killed two Spanish police officers on Mallorca.

The Spanish newspaper El Pais reported the bomb destroyed the car in which two Civil Guard members, aged 27 and 28, were riding shortly before 2 p.m. local time. The device detonated outside a Civil Guard barracks in Calvia. And the attack took place near a popular beach and within kilometers of the Spanish royal family's summer home.

Spanish authorities have blamed ETA for both attacks. And there is precedent to suggest members of the group potentially could have planted the Calvia bomb as a way to disrupt Spain's lucrative tourism industry.

Another factor that could potentially contribute to a possible upsurge in ETA attacks is tomorrow marks the group's 50th anniversary. The group violated its own self-imposed ceasefire in Dec. 2006 when its members detonated a bomb inside a parking garage at Barajas Airport in Madrid that killed two people. Former Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar's government initially blamed ETA for the 2004 Madrid train bombings, but evidence quickly suggested Islamic fundamentalists orchestrated the attacks that killed nearly 200 people.

French and Spanish authorities have arrested a number of high-ranking ETA members in recent years, but this latest incident clearly demonstrates the group continues to pose a potential threat.

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