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A bomb found on a high-speed train line in central Spain appears to contain the same type of dynamite as used in the March 11 Madrid rail bombings, Spanish state radio has reported.
"First examination indicates that it is the same dynamite - Goma 2 Eco - as used in the Madrid attacks," the radio said.
A bomb was found on a high-speed rail track in central Spain yesterday just weeks after 191 people were killed in suspected al-Qaeda bombings of four packed Madrid commuter trains.
The discovery disrupted travel as millions of Spaniards prepared to leave cities for the Easter week holidays and came on the day a new session of Parliament opened following last month's elections.
Interior Minister Angel Acebes said the bomb was believed to contain between 10 and 12 kg of explosives, probably dynamite.
It was found in a bag under the rails of the high-speed train line connecting Madrid and the southern city of Seville. The explosives were connected by a cable to a detonator, he told a news conference.
Acebes gave no information about who may be responsible for planting the bomb, saying the explosives would have to be examined.
A railway employee spotted the bag near the city of Toledo, about 60km south of Madrid, and alerted authorities who sent explosives experts to the scene to disactivate it.
Services on the Madrid-Seville AVE service were halted while all the track was checked, Acebes said.
Last night, three letter bombs addressed to Spanish media organisations were intercepted at a mail distribution centre in Zaragoza, northern Spain. Police explosives experts defused two of the letter bombs and blew up a third.
An Interior Ministry source said authorities did not know who was responsible for the letter bombs, which were addressed to executives at newspaper La Razon, radio station COPE and broadcaster Antena 3.
The rail bomb, and the discovery of three letter bombs, kept nerves on edge in Spain and in the markets after the shock caused by the March 11 train bombings - the first attack in the West linked to Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda network since the September 11, 2001 strikes on New York and Washington.
On March 11, two of the trains exploded at or near Madrid's Atocha station, which is also the terminus for AVE services to Seville. State television said access to the AVE departure lounge at Atocha was closed.
The AVE service whisks passengers from Madrid to Seville in a little over two hours and is one of the jewels of the Spanish rail network.
Yesterday marked the start of one of the busiest travel periods in the year in Spain. Millions of Spaniards leave cities for the Easter week holidays. Seville draws huge crowds for its Easter processions.
The bomb was found as members of parliament elected in Spain's March 14 election took their seats in Madrid. The Socialists ousted the ruling Popular Party in an election upset three days after the March 11 bombings.
- Reuters (April 3, 2004)
This story was found at: http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2004/04/03/1080544705411.html
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