The March 11th terrorist bombings on Madrid are making the headlines again with Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero’s testimony.
He is the first Spanish premier to be questioned by a parliamentary commission. He rejected claims the attacks, which took place three days before a general election, helped catapult his Socialist Party to power. He also responded to criticism that Spain bowed to terrorism by withdrawing its troops from Iraq, by saying that had always been a campaign pledge. Speaking about his conservative predecessors, he accused the former government of deceiving the public by first trying to lay the blame for the attacks on Basque terrorists, then erasing computer records concerning that period: “When I took office, not a single document or piece of paper could be found, it had all been deleted,” he told the committee. Nearly 200 people died when a series of bombs exploded on commuter trains throughout the Spanish capital on 11th March this year. Ex-premier Jose Maria Aznar has always denied the assaults were the result of his unpopular decision to support the US-led invasion of Iraq.