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ETA blamed for killing senior policeman

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ETA blamed for killing senior policeman

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A top anti-terrorist police officer has been killed in Spain’s Basque Country in what is believed to be ETA’s first deadly attack since December.

The car bomb exploded at around 9:05 CET in a town close to the northern city of Bilbao. The victim has been named as Inspector Eduardo Pueyes Garcia, a 49-year-old father-of-two. His death ends a long gap without fatalities for a group hard hit by arrests of its leaders. There has been no claim of responsibility but the attack bears all the hallmarks of the militant Basque group. It is the first strike to take place in the region since Socialist leader Patxi Lopez became head of the Basque regional government in May. A minute of silence was also held in the Basque parliament. In Brussels, Spain’s Prime Minister admitted despite the government’s crackdown on ETA the organisation remains a powerful threat. “The terrorists are weaker because of the international cooperation between security forces, judges and the courts. We knew this could happen again but we can’t resign ourselves to accept that,” he said. In April, police arrested a top suspected ETA commander, bring to four the number of leaders caught in less than a year.