Three injured in car bomb

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The Independent Online

A car bomb exploded in the northern Basque city of Bilbao, Spain, today, killing at least three people.

A car bomb exploded in the northern Basque city of Bilbao, Spain, today, killing at least three people.

Spanish news media speculated that three victims - who were inside the moving car when it exploded and burst into flames - were armed ETA activists.

The national news agency Efe said the explosion occurred in the industrial neighborhood of Bolueta in Bilbao shortly before 9pm and that the bodies of two men and a woman were found.

One body was thrown 50 yards from the blast. Weapons were also found in the street, apparently blasted from the car in the explosion.

The guerrilla group ETA, an acronym that stands for Basque Homeland and Freedom, has been fighting since the late 1960s to carve an independent homeland out of Basque areas in northern Spain and southwest France.

The last outbreak of violence attributed to ETA was the bombing of a bank office on July 27 in the Basque capital of Vitoria. Nobody was hurt in that explosion.

That attack was the eighth blamed on ETA since July 12, when a car bomb exploded in a downtown Madrid shopping area, injuring nine people.

The recent spate of violence included the assassination in July of a town councilor in the southern city of Malaga.

The series of attacks are seen as an acceleration of the campaign of ETA, which has killed some 800 people in its 30-year war for independence for the Basque region of northern Spain. The group abandoned a 14-month ceasefire earlier this year.

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