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2010-03-02

Spanish court claims Venezuela aided ETA, FARC

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MADRID – A Spanish judge claimed the Venezuelan government assisted terrorist groups Euskadi Ta Askatasuna (ETA) and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) in plotting attacks on Spanish soil, including a possible attempt to assassinate Colombian President Álvaro Uribe during a recent visit. Spain’s high court ruled Venezuelan officials facilitated communications between the FARC and ETA, even going as far as offering logistical help if terrorists wanted to kill Colombian officials during visits to Spain. Thirteen warrants were issued for suspected FARC and ETA members, including one for a Venezuelan government official who was born in Spain, by judge Eloy Velasco of the high court. Now, Spain wants an answer from Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez’s administration. “The Spanish government will act in accordance with that explanation,” José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, Spain’s prime minister, said at a media conference. Venezuela’s government released a statement that reads: “The Venezuelan government found out by way of the press of the Spanish ruling in which it makes unacceptable, politically motivated allusions about the Venezuelan government.” Uribe would not comment specifically on the matter. “We have to react with prudence and find out what is happening through diplomatic channels,” he said. [Reuters.com (Brazil), 03/01/20 10; G1.com.br (Brazil), 03/01/2010; Terra.com.br (Brazil), 03/01/2010; Eltiempo.com (Colombia), 03/01/2010]

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