When I visited France in late 1987, ETA, an armed group of Basque nationalists, were active in Spain with 44 deaths in the previous twelve months from car bomb attacks in Madrid, Barcelona and Zaragoza. Almost 200 others have been injured from these bombings, and many others have been victims of kidnappings. I would have loved to have visited San Sebastian and the Playa de la Concha, temptingly just over the border to the south of Bordeaux, but it was just too risky.
By my second visit in November 1989, the situation hasn’t greatly improved. A ceasefire had been announced in January 1989, which was extended at the end of March 1989, but a few days later explosions claimed by ETA targeted RENFE (the Spanish state railway). Further attacks occurred nearly every day in the weeks that followed.
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