RealNews

Spain probes bomb carnage claims

Spanish officials are investigating conflicting clues following 10 bombings in Madrid that killed at least 190 people and injured more than 1,200. A statement attributed to al-Qaeda claiming responsibility emerged soon after it was revealed that an Arabic tape had been found in a suspect van. But other indicators pointed to the Basque armed separatist group Eta. The interior minister said all lines of inquiry would be followed, as King Juan Carlos tried to comfort the nation. One claim of responsibility for the rush-hour attacks on trains at three stations was e-mailed to the London-based Arabic newspaper al-Quds al-Arabi. It said Spain had been targeted by the Abu Hafs al-Masri Brigades on behalf of al-Qaeda as “one of the pillars of the crusade alliance”. “This is part of settling old accounts with Spain, the crusader, and America’s ally in its war against Islam,” the e-mail said. A message purportedly from al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden last year threatened Spain and other countries who supported the US-led war in Iraq. But the BBC’s security correspondent, Frank Gardner, says US officials caution that al-Qaeda does not usually claim responsibility so early. Full Story

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