February 26, 2006

Madrid Protests: "¡La memoria, la dignidad y la justicia!"

"We want to make sure that [the government] does not negotiate with murderers and that terrorism is not seen as a way to achieve a political end." - Irene Villa
The current administration may have no spine, but the Spanish citizenry does.
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MADRID (AFP) - Tens of thousands of people marched in downtown Madrid to protest the government's anti-terrorism policies and its willingness to negotiate with the armed Basque separatist group ETA.

Crying "Zapatero, resign!", referring to Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, marchers mobilised by the Association of the Victims of Terrorism (AVT) waved placards scrawled with "Not in my name!" and "Memory, dignity and justice".

Others in the demonstration, which also had the support of the right-wing opposition Popular Party (PP) and the Catholic Church, bore large photos of some of the 800 people killed by ETA during its 40-year campaign to establish a Basque state in northeast Spain and southwest France.

The PP-led Madrid government said 1.4 million people turned out for the two-hour demonstration, more than 10 times the police estimate of 110,000.

The AVT and right-wing parties accuse Zapatero's socialist government of negotiating secretly with ETA.

The government denies this and says ETA must lay down its arms as a precondition for any talks.

"Each time we've wanted to talk to ETA, they have reinforced themselves," one of the marchers, Silvia Mera, a historian, told AFP.

"I mainly came to support the victims of terrorism, but also to protest against all of Zapatero's policies," said Jose Aguado, a psychoanalyst.

There's something satisfying about seeing (a grinning?) former Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar in attendance in a march against Zapatero.

Your friendship in the beginning stages of the war will not be forgotten, nor will your successor's cowardice.

Muchos gracias a Gateway Pundit.

Posted by Kyer at February 26, 2006 01:07 AM | TrackBack