News, January 2005

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January 29th, resumé.

(Sport news click more) earthquake 4.6 in Murcia, also affects neighbouring provinces - no one hurt; weather takes a break - more snow and wind expected tomorrow; yesterday, for the third day... worst winter weather for 20 years and 3rd worst for 100: snow and ice across Spain - inland temperatures down to -15ºC (4ºF), and -8º in Mallorca, snow at beach level in north and Mallorca, mountain passes (some still) and Menorca airport were closed, Madrid-France road and rail links now partially reopened in Basque Country, warnings of more to come; Judge Baltasar Garzón to try 35 Basque party Batasuna members for membership of ETA; Ibarretxe plan, a home rule project for the Basque Country to be debated in Madrid Congress on 1st February - expected to be rejected - Go Basque Politics; flu epidemic at highest point for a decade- currently over 200,000 affected, double the last peak in December; The Sea Inside nominated for Oscar for best foreign language film; tow trucks again on strike more >>

News from the Churches

Buenas Noticias TV, the weekly evangelical programme on the national station TVE, has now double the air time, with 15 minutes each week. It can also be seen on the international satellite channel TVE Internacional on Sundays at 06.30 GMT in Europe, Africa and Asia and 10.10 GMT in the Americas. More info at Note that the timing on the programme is Madrid time (GMT +1), final programme, still subject to change, published 24 hours ahead. more >>

The Sea Inside nominated for an Oscar

25th January. Alejandro Amenábar's controversial film The Sea Inside (in Spanish Mar Adentro) has been nominated for the Oscar for the best foreign language film, having previously been awarded numerous awards in Europe and America. Variously praised or condemned for its replay of the euthanasia of Spaniard Ramón Sampedro in 1998. more >>

New ETA bombing

19th January. Yesterday, just hours after Arnaldo Otegi or Basque political party Batasuna had warned ETA might attack again, a car bomb went off in Getxo, Bilbao, wounding one policeman. more >>

EU Constitutional Referendum campaign under way

20 January. A referendum has been called to approve the new European Constitution. The date is to be 20th February. more >>

Lottery Scams

It has come to our attention that fraudsters are sending out false win advices from Spain all over the world. more >>

Zaragoza and Bilbao chosen for upcoming world events

10 January First Zaragoza, with an Expo, now Bilbao with an ocean race, have been chosen for upcoming world events: 5-Oceans 2006 and Expo 2008. more >>

ETA attacks again, in Madrid and other cities

6th December. On the night of the 3rd, at a time when hundreds of thousands of people were on their way out of Madrid for the long holiday weekend, five small bombs exploded in filling stations at strategic points around the capital. Two policemen were slightly hurt. A warning was given to a Basque newspaper in the traditional ETA manner, allowing the avoidance of further victims. 5th Dec: another small bomb was found and defused in Almería, set to go off on the 6th, day of the constitution, while yet more bombs escaped detection until going off in Alicante, Avila, Ciudad Real, León, Málaga, Valladolid y Santillana del Mar (Cantabria). more >>

Spain celebrates long 'Immaculate Constitution' weekend

On December 6th the Spanish Constitution is 26 years old. Two days later, the Roman Catholic festivity of the Immaculate Conception is also a bank holiday, leading to a very long weekend this year, until Wednesday 8th. As with Thanksgiving in the States, this is the official kick-off in Spain to the Christmas season, more >>

Historic ETA leaders call a halt to 'military action'

2nd November. On a day when terrorism is the nº1 issue in the US election, and the same day that another bunch of suspected terrorists have been arrested, six historic leaders of ETA (all currently serving jail sentences) have called for an end to their reign of terror. In a nutshell, they admit that this is the worst moment in ETA's history and there seems no point in attempting to continue their political struggle by armed means. They would now prefer to see their political wing take up the struggle for the independence they so desire for their country. more >>

News theme: Basque politics and ETA

Until 2003, terrorism in Spain meant ETA. Bombs, or bomb threats, assassinations and extortion were a regular part of life, affecting few directly, but leaving no one completely sure that it could not hit him or her. Evidently, the events of 11th March, 2004 changed the whole way Spaniards look at terrorism, as ETA lost its monopoly with the arrival of islamic terror. At the same time, over the past 18 months many accused of key ETA roles have been arrested. Yet, while terrorism is now regarded in a different way, the Basque 'problem' continues to be a major theme in the news and the political agenda. more >>

News Theme: Big events in 2005, 400th anniversary of El Quijote

In 2005 is the 400th anniversary of the mother of all novels, Cervantes' Don Quijote, a book written under the eyes of the Spanish Inquisition but which expresses many ideas and quotes scripture at large. Evangelicals have not missed this fact and are hard at work to point out the references! more >>

News theme: weather and winter travel

Spain is not, contrary to its image, permanent summer! The tourist season is limited, even at coastal areas, except in the Canary Islands, to half the year. Winter, especially inland, is far harsher than it is in (mostly) mild Britain, so far further north. more >>

More News

A few more news items and where to find more news about Spain: more >>