Return to home 1900 Jan 1,
Xavier Cugat, bandleader (married Abbe Lane, Charo), was born in
1901 Nov 22, Joaquin Rodrigo,
Spanish composer (Juglares), was born in Sagunto, Valencia.
1904 May 11, Salvador Dali
(d.1989), surrealist painter, was born in Figueres.
(HN, 5/11/98)(WSJ, 1/25/99, p.A16)(SFEC, 7/16/00,
1906 Apr 7, A general act was
issued by the international conference of Algeciras, Spain. Thirteen
powers participated in the deliberations on the Moroccan question,
and despite strong German objections, agreed to entrust to France
and Spain the management of the Moroccan police. The powers also
made arrangements regarding Morocco's state bank, system of
taxation, customs administration, and public works.
1906 May 31, In Madrid, Spain,
an anarchist bomb exploded under the wedding carriage King Alfonso
and Queen Ena. 20 people were killed.
1906 Santiago Ramon y Cajal
(1852-1934), Spanish neuroscientist, and Italian Camillo Golgi
won the Nobel Prize in Physiology of Medicine in recognition of
their work on the structure of the nervous system.
1907 Jun, Pablo Picasso
stumbled on the African and Oceanic collection at the Ethnographic
Museum of the Trocadero in Paris, as he was working on "Les
Desmoiselles d’Avignon." The experience from that point on put an
African influence on much of his work.
(WSJ, 11/13/96, p.A20)(Econ, 2/11/06, p.81)
1907 Dec 2, Spain and France
agreed to enforce Moroccan measures adopted in 1906.
1907 Ricardo Anckermann
(b.1842), ethnic German artist who painted in Mallorca, Spain, died.
(WSJ, 12/27/07, p.D7)
1909 May 18, Isaac M F Albéniz
(48), Spanish pianist, composer, died.
1912 Mar 5, Spanish steamer
"Principe de Asturias" sank NE of Spain and 500 died.
1912 Nov 12, Jose Canalejas Y
Mendez (b.1854), premier of Spain, was assassinated by anarchist
1915 Apr 15, Manuel de Falla's
ballet "El Amor Brujo," premiered in Madrid.
1917 Feb 16, The 1st Madrid
synagogue in 425 years opened.
1917 Apr 7, De Falla's ballet
"El Sombrero de tres Picos," premiered in Madrid.
1918 Oct 17, Anton Dilger
(B.1884), an American saboteur educated as a surgeon in Germany,
died of Spanish flu in Spain. [see 1916] In 2007 Robert Koenig
authored “The Fourth Horseman: One Man’s Mission to Wage the Great
War in America.”
(SSFC, 1/14/07, p.M2)
1919 Oct 18, Madrid opened a
1921 Mar 8, Spanish Premier
Eduardo Dato was assassinated while leaving Parliament in Madrid.
1921 Jul, Juan Miro
(1893-1983), Spanish artist, began working on his painting titled
“The Farm.” He completed it 9 months later. Ernest Hemingway, one of
his sparring partners in Paris, purchased the painting in 1925. In
1987 the Hemingway family donated the painting to the National
Gallery of Art.
(WSJ, 12/13/08, p.W8)
1923 Aug 10, Joaquin Sorolla y
Bastida (b.1863), Spanish impressionist painter, died in Cercedilla.
His work included “A View of Malaga.”
(WSJ, 10/29/04, p.A15)(www.britannica.com)
1923 Manuel de Falla composed
"Master Peter’s Puppet Show," (El Retablo de Maese Pedro). It was
intended as a puppet theater forged with the poet, Federico Garcia
(SFC, 8/25/97, p.E1)
1924 Nov 1, Victoria de los
Angeles, soprano (Mimi-La Boheme), was born in Spain.
1925 Jun 22, France and Spain
agreed to join forces against Abd el Krim in Morocco.
1925 Jose Ortega y Gasset
authored "The Dehumanization of Art," in which he pointed to the
"grave dissociation of past and present."
(WSJ, 1/28/02, p.A13)
1926 Jun 17, Spain threatened
to quit the League of Nations if Germany was allowed to join.
1926 Aug 7, The United States
declared non-intervention in the Spanish Civil War.
1926 The Marques de la Vega
Inclan, the Royal Commissioner for Tourism under Alfonso III, began
to promote hotels in remote places to boost local economies. The
"Paradores" were to be built by the government. The first one opened
in 1928 in the mountains of Gredos.
(SFEM, 12/12/98, p.10)
1926 Antoni Gaudi, eccentric
architect, died. His work included the Sagrada Familia Church with
its Torre del Nacimento (Tower of Birth) in Barcelona.
(WSJ, 7/21/00, p.W12)
1927 Mar 22, Federico Garcia
Lorca's "El Maleficio," premiered in Madrid.
1929 Jul, Gala, wife of poet
Paul Eluard, met Salvadore Dali (25) in Cadaques, Spain. She
believed he was a genius on the verge of madness and decided to help
him get a grip on reality while he unleashed his visions on canvas.
(SFEM, 1/25/98, p.30)
1930 Nov 15, Madrid was
paralyzed by general strikes and riots.
1930 Dec 12, Revolution began
in Spain as rebels took a border town.
1930 Dec 16, A general strike
was called in support of the revolution.
1930 Dec 20, Thousands of
Spaniards signed a revolutionary manifesto.
1931 Apr 12, Spanish voters
rejected the monarchy.
1931 Apr 14, In Spain a
Republic was declared. King Alfonso XIII of Spain was overthrown and
went into exile, and the Second Spanish Republic was proclaimed.
(SFC, 11/12/96, p.A12)(HN, 4/14/98)(AP, 4/14/08)
1931 Jun 13, Santiago Rusinol
(b.1861), Spanish Catalan post-impressionist painter, author, and
1931 Aug 2, Spanish Catalonia
agreed by over 99% for autonomous status.
1931 Oct 1, Spain established
general female suffrage.
1931 Nov 29, The Spanish
government seized large estates for land redistribution.
1931 Dec 9, Spain became a
1931 Randoplh Hearst, American
newspaper magnate, purchased a collapsing former Trapist monestary
in Spain, the Santa Maria de Ovila, for $97,000. Plans to rebuilt
the 16th century chapter house at his mother’s Wyntoon estate went
on hold with the Great Depression. Hearst later gifted the crated
stones to San Francisco. In 1994 SF agreed to loan the stones to
Cistercian monks at Vina, near Chico, Ca. In the spring of 2012 the
scaffolding of rebuilt structure in Vina came
(SFC, 12/26/12, p.A1)
1932 Jan 22, Government troops
crushed a Communist uprising in Northern Spain.
1932 The town of Bunol banned
bullfighting. An annual Tomatina festival later took its place where
participants pelt each other with tomatoes. [see 1944-45]
(SFC, 8/29/96, p.A12)
1933 Jan 12, An uprising of
Guardia Civil in Spain left 25 dead.
1933 Apr 12, Montserrat
Caballe, soprano (Mimi-La Boheme), was born in Barcelona, Spain.
1933 May 9, Spanish anarchists
called for a general strike.
1933 Jun 3, Pope Pius XI
encyclical "On oppression of the Church in Spain."
1933 Sep 15, Rafael Fruhbeck de
Burgos, conductor, was born in Burgos, Spain.
1933 Nov 5, Spanish Basques
voted for autonomy.
1933 A revolutionary uprising
was staged by anarchists at Casas Viejas and was drowned in blood by
Spanish authorities. In 1968 Jerome Mintz (d.1997 at 67), US
anthropologist, published "The Anarchists of Casa Viejas," an
account and oral history of the 1933 Spanish uprising.
1934 Oct 18, Santiago Ramon y
Cajal (b.1852), Spanish neuroscientist and Nobel Laureate (1906),
died. “Every man can, if he so desires, become the sculptor of his
own brain.” His original pioneering investigations of the
microscopic structure of the brain have led his being designated by
many, as the father of modern neuroscience.
1934 Dec 29, Federico Garcia
Lorca's "Yerma," premiered in Madrid.
1934 Spain annexed the interior
area of Western Sahara.
(SFC, 11/27/00, p.A12)
1935 Oct 20, 400,000
demonstrated against fascism in Madrid.
1936 Feb 16, Spanish Frente
Popular (People's Front) won elections.
1936 May 4, El Cordobes (Manuel
Benitez), Spanish matador, was born.
1936 Jul 17, Gen. Francisco
Franco was flown from the Canary Islands, where he served as
military governor, to Spanish Morocco where he led a rebellion
against the elected Popular Front. This began the Spanish civil war.
The first word of the rebellion was reported by Lester Ziffren
(1906-2007) of the United Press. The rebel Nationalist movement
under Francisco Franco gained support from the fascist regimes in
Italy and Germany in opposition.
(SFC, 11/12/96, p.A12)(SFC, 7/13/01, WBb
p.3)(WSJ, 11/24/07, p.A8)
1936 Aug 3, The US State
Department urged Americans in Spain to leave because of that
country's civil war.
1936 Aug 16, Spanish poet
Garcia Lorca was arrested in Granada. He disappeared shortly
thereafter. The 1997 film "The Disappearance of Garcia Lorca" was an
attempt to depict the circumstances of his disappearance. Lorca was
the author of "Gypsy Ballads," "Blood Wedding" and "The Poet."
Spanish poet Fredico Garcia Lorca was shot by Franco's troops after
being forced to dig his own grave.
(LVRJ, 11/1/97, p.12B)(HN, 8/19/98)(MT, Spg. ‘99,
1936 Aug 18, Federico Garcia
Lorca was shot and killed by a Francoist squad on the outskirts of
Grenada and buried in an unmarked grave along with 3 other
prisoners. His dramatic works included "Blood Wedding," "Yerma,"
Dona Rosita the Spinster," and "The House of Bernarda Alba." In 1998
the biography "Lorca: A Dream of Life" by Leslie Stainton was
published in London.
(MT, Spg. ‘99, p.3)
1936 Sep 21, The Spanish
fascist junta named Franco generalissimo, supreme commander. [see
1936 Sep, Robert Capa's
photograph of a falling Spanish Civil War militiaman was first
published by French magazine Vu, and later in Life magazine. The
caption on the legendary photojournalist's "Falling Militiaman" said
it depicted the moment a Republican rifleman was mortally wounded.
In 2009 Spanish researchers who studied events surrounding the
picture believed it may have been staged.
1936 Oct 1, General Francisco
Franco was proclaimed the head of an insurgent Spanish state. [see
1936 Nov 7, The Battle of
1936 Nov 7, In Spain as
Franco’s army besieged Madrid, Santiago Carrillo (1915-2014) was
appointed Councilor for Public Order in Madrid. His first act was to
organize the execution of more than 2,000 imprisoned army officers,
suspected of being “fifth-columnists.”
1936 Nov 19, German Luftwaffe
bombed Madrid and continued bombing to Nov 23.
1936 Nov 23, U.S. abandoned the
American embassy in Madrid, Spain, which was engulfed by civil war.
1936 Nov-1936 Dec, In Spain
hundreds of Franco supporters were killed at Paracuellos. Between
2,000 and 4,000 suspected supporters of the coup against the Second
Spanish Republic, were killed by the Republican Army. The Soviet
NKVD was later implicated.
1936 The Gypsy Jimenez Malla
was killed by Republican forces in Barbastro when he defended a
priest and refused to renounce his faith. In 1997 he was beatified
by Pope John Paul II.
(SFC, 5/5/97, p.A8)
1936 Some 700 Soviet advisors
were sent to Spain in an attempt to run and control the economy,
government and armed forces. By the end of the civil war most were
killed by Stalin’s purges.
(WSJ, 7/11/01, p.A15)
1936-1939 The Spanish Civil War has been commonly
referred to as "a rehearsal for World War II" by historians because
of the intervention by Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy and the Soviet
Union, and their use of the war to test new weapons and military
techniques. It was fought between the liberal Second Spanish
Republic government and right-wing rebel forces, including the
fascist Falangists, monarchists and Nationalists. The rebels had the
support of the Roman Catholic Church, in addition to Germany and
Italy. The Government supporters, called Loyalists, had the support
of communists, socialists, anarchists, the Soviet Union and
volunteers from around the world who formed the International
Brigades. Between 400,000 and 1 million were killed in the war,
ultimately won by the rebels. In 2008 Paul Preston authored “We Saw
Spain Die: Foreign correspondents in the Spanish Civil War.” In 2012
Paul Preston authored “The Spanish Holocaust: Inquisition and
Extermination in Twentieth-Century Spain.”
(HNQ, 9//00)(Econ, 10/18/08, p.97)(Econ, 3/24/12,
1936-1939 The International Brigades of about
40,000 volunteers went to Spain to fight fascism [in the Spanish
Civil War] and restore the legal government overturned by Franco. Of
these the American Abe Lincoln Brigade had about 2,800 volunteers of
whom more than half died. Some 500,000 to 1 million people died in
the war. Veterans of the Brigades later published the "Volunteer."
(SFC, 6/3/96, p.E2)(WSJ, 8/27/96, p.A12)(SFC,
11/12/96, p.A12)(SFC, 12/23/98, p.C5)
1936-1939 The Soviets brought to Spain both
Russian commanders and the NKVD to suppress Trotskyists and
anarchists who were fighting the volunteers. In 1998 William Herrick
(83) published his memoir "Jumping the Line." Included in the work
is his story of the time he spent with the Lincoln Battalion in the
Spanish Civil War (1936-1939). The events were fictionalized in his
1969 novel "Hermanos." In 2001 the Soviet Union’s role was
documented in "Spain Betrayed" edited by Ronald Radosh, Mary R.
Habeck and Grigory Sevostianov.
(WSJ, 4/30/98, p.A17)(WSJ, 7/11/01, p.A15)
1936-1939 The term "fifth column" was first
applied during the Spanish Civil War of 1936-'39. As the forces of
General Francisco Franco laid siege to Madrid, General Emilio Mola
referred to a "fifth column" that would sabotage the city's defenses
and help his forces, which were marching in four columns, take the
city. Thereafter, the term has been used to refer to a clandestine,
subversive force at work within a country to further the military
and political aims of an enemy.
1937 Jan 6, The U.S. banned the
shipment of arms to war-torn Spain.
1937 Mar 20, A Franco offensive
took place at Guadalajara, Spain.
1937 Apr 26, German planes from
the Condor Legion--sent to Spain by Adolf Hitler to help fascist
General Francisco Franco overthrow the communist Popular Front
regime-- attacked the Basque town of Guernica in Spain. Bombs fell
for three hours and escaping villagers were shot down by
machine-gun fire from the air. The attack killed as many as
1,600-1,650 Basque civilians and injured 900. Although the alleged
target was a bridge of military significance some distance from the
town, dazed survivors described a merciless four-hour bombing and
strafing attack by German pilots directed toward the village and its
inhabitants. The Guernica atrocity became synonymous with the horror
of modern warfare and inspired one of the 20th century's greatest
works of art, Guernica, by Spanish artist Pablo Picasso.
(440 Int’l., 4/26/97, p.2)(WSJ, 4/28/97,
p.A1)(AP, 4/26/98)(HNPD, 4/26/99)
1937 Apr 27, German bombers of
the Condor Legion conducted follow up raids at Guernica, Spain. [see
1937 May 31, German battleships
shelled Almeria, Spain.
1937 Jun 19, The town of
Bilbao, Spain, fell to the Nationalist forces.
1937 Jul 5, There was a
Republican offensive by Brunete in Spain.
1937 Aug 6, Franco's artillery
opened fire on Madrid.
1937 Aug 24, There was a
Republican offensive near Belchite, Spain.
1937 Oct 31, Spanish government
moved from Valencia to Barcelona.
1937 Nov 28, Franco blockaded
the Spanish coast.
1937 Dec 1, Japan recognized
Spain’s Franco govt.
1937 Pablo Picasso painted the
black-and-white "Guernica" mural for the 1937 International
Exposition in Paris. The Republican government commissioned the
mural painting as part of the Spanish pavilion at the 1937 World’s
Fair in Paris. Picasso managed to complete the huge work (11.5 by
25.5 feet) in just over three weeks, with the assistance of Dora
Maar. Picasso never returned to his native Spain (he had last been
there in 1934). Before his death in 1973, he directed that
"Guernica" not be returned to Spain until the restoration of
democracy there. Francisco Franco, leader of the Nationalist forces
that overthrew the Republican government in the Spanish Civil War,
remained the head of the Spanish government until 1973, dying in
1975. Economic initiatives and other reforms begun in the 1960s
helped transform Spain into a democratic constitutional monarchy in
the three years following his death. The painting "Guernica" was
returned from New York City in 1981 and is now on exhibit, along
with other 19th and 20th century works, at the Buen Retiro Palace in
(SFC, 4/26/00, p.C5)
1937 A Hungarian brigade joined
the Spanish civil war to fight the fascists.
(MT, Fall. ‘97, p.4)
1938 Jan 5, Juan Carlos I, King
of Spain, was born.
1938 Jan 12, Austria recognized
the Franco government in Spain.
1938 Feb 27, Britain and France
recognized the Franco government in Spain.
1938 Apr 19, General Francisco
Franco declared victory in the Spanish Civil War. [see 1939]
1938 May 3, Vatican recognized
Franco's Catholic and fascist Spain.
1938 Oct 28, There was a
farewell parade of International Brigade in Barcelona, Spain.
1938 Nov 15, Farewell Parade of
International Brigades in Barcelona.
1938 Juan Miro, Spanish
painter, completed a set of 8 etchings titled the "Black and Red
(SFEC, 1/10/99, p.T3)
1938 The Spanish Loyalist
defense at the battle of the Ebro was photographed by Robert Capa.
(SFEM, 1/12/97, BR p.9)
1939 Jan 26, Franco conquered
1939 Feb 6, Spanish government
fled to France.
1939 Feb 11, The Negrin
government returned to Madrid, Spain.
1939 Feb 28, Great Britain
recognized the Franco regime in Spain. [see Feb 27, 1938]
1939 Mar 6, Jose Miaja took
over the Madrid government after a military coup and vowed to seek
"peace with honor."
1939 Mar 28, The Spanish Civil
War ended as Madrid fell to Francisco Franco. He emerged victorious
and became head of Fascist Spain ending the Spanish Civil War.
France executed more than 100,000 people who had opposed him. In
1982 Dan Richardson wrote "Comintern Army," a historical work on the
Spanish Civil War. "The Historical Dictionary of the Spanish Civil
War" was published in 1982. In 1991 Burnett Bolloten wrote "The
Spanish Civil War." In 2006 Antony Beevor authored “The Battle for
Spain: The Spanish Civil War 1936-1936.” This was an update of his
(SFC, 11/12/96, p.A12)(AP, 3/28/97)(HN,
3/28/98)(WSJ, 11/19/96, p.A22)(Econ, 6/24/06, p.97)
1939 Apr 1, The United States
recognized the Franco government in Spain following the end of the
Spanish civil war. A Spanish official later said that without
American petroleum and American trucks and American credit we could
never have won the civil war.
(AP, 4/1/98)(Econ, 6/24/06, p.97)
1939 A handful of Spanish
artists, including Eugenio Granell and Jose Vela Zanetti, immigrated
to Santo Domingo of the Dominican Republic and introduced the modern
1941 Jan 21, Placido Domingo,
opera tenor (Pinkerton-Mme Butterfly), was born in Madrid, Spain.
1942 Camilo Jose Cela (d.2002),
Spanish author, published "The Family of Pascual Duarte" in
Argentina because it was considered too violent and crude for Spain.
Cela won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1989. Cela’s style was
called "tremendismo" and clashed with the lyrical writing of
previous Spanish writers.
(SFC, 1/19/02, p.A23)
1943 Sep 23, Julio Iglesias De
la Cueva, Spanish singer (To All the Girls I’ve Loved Before…), was
born in Madrid.
1943 Gonzalo Torrente Ballester
(d.1998 at 88) published his first novel "Javier Marino." He went on
to publish over 30 novels that included "La Saga/Fuga de J.B" (The
Legend/Flight of J.B), "Los Gozos y Las Sombras" (The Delights and
(SFC, 1/29/99, p.E2)
1944 Jan 16, In Leon Province,
Spain, train wrecks in the Torro Tunnel killed more than 500 people.
(AP, 2/18/04)(SFC, 6/4/98, p.A15)
1944-1945 Bunol, Spain, 25 miles west of Valencia.
La Tomatina, the tomato throwing festival, began when some boys
tossed tomatoes during a procession in honor of the patron saint,
San Luis Bertran. The festival grew even though banned a few times
in the 50's to the purchase of $18,400 worth of tomatoes by the town
government from the Spanish province of Extremadura, 500 miles away.
(WSJ, 8/31/95, p.A-1)
1945 Carmen Laforet (23),
Spanish writer, authored her first novel “Nada” (Nothing). It was
set in Spain during the 1930s and conveyed the crushing weight of
war through its characters. An English translation became available
(SFC, 3/2/07, p.E7)
1946 Nov 14, Manuel de Falla
(69), Spanish composer (Vita Breve, Atl ntida), died.
1946 Dec 5, Jose Carreras,
opera tenor (I Lombardi, Werther, Three Tenors), was born in
1946 Dec 11, Spain was
suspended from the UN.
1947 Jul 9, Spain voted for
1947 Aug 18, Naval torpedo and
mine factory exploded at Cadiz, Spain, killing 300.
1947 Aug 28, Legendary
bullfighter Manolete was mortally wounded by a bull during a fight
in Linares, Spain; he died the following day at age 30.
1950 Nov 10, Spanish dictator
Generalissimo Francisco Franco ended war in Gibraltar.
1950 Dec 27, U.S. and Spain
1950 The Club Mediterranean
resort opened catering to singles. Gilbert Trigano (d.2000 at 80) of
France and Gerard Blitz, a Belgium water polo champion, founded the
1st Club Med on the Spanish island of Mallorca.
(WSJ, 1/11/99, p.R34)(SFC, 2/5/01, p.A21)
1952 Barnaby Conrad (30)
authored the bestseller "Matador," about the life of Manolete,
Spain's greatest bullfighter.
(SSFC, 11/16/03, p.E3)
1952 Rafael del Pino founded
Grupo Ferrovial S.A., a multinational Spanish company involved in
construction, infrastructure, real estate, and related services.
1953 Feb 25, Jose Maria Aznar,
later prime minister, was born.
(WP, 6/29/96, p.A20)
1953 Sep 26, US and Spain
signed a defense treaty with 4 US bases to be set in Spain .
1953 Claudio Rodriguez
published the first of his 5 books of poetry: "Don de Ebriedad"
(Gift, or Master of Drunkenness).
(SFC, 7/23/99, p.D6)
1953 The Spanish film
“Bienvenido Mister Marshall!” was directed by Luis Garcia Berlanga.
(Econ, 8/10/13, p.71)
1953 Opera lovers in Bilbao
founded the Association Bilbaina de Amigos de la Opera (A.B.A.O.).
(WSJ, 11/23/99, p.A21)
1954 Gen. Franco closed the
Spanish consulate on Gibraltar in a fit of rage over a visit by
Queen Elizabeth II.
1955 Oct 18, Jose Ortega y
Gasset, Spanish philosopher, died at 72.
1956 Apr 19, In Spain 12 people
died and about 70 were injured following earthquakes in the southern
1956 Nov 6, Holland and Spain
withdrew from Olympics, to protest Soviets in Hungary.
1957 Ramon Rubial (d.1999 at
92), an anti-Franco socialist, was released from prison and became
the underground leader of the Socialist Party.
(SFC, 5/26/99, p.C8)
1957 In Spain a flood
devastated the Ciutat Vella, the historic district of Valencia. To
avoid another such deluge the government diverted the Turia River
and turned the riverbed into a public green zone.
(SFC, 8/15/07, p.G1)
1958 May 29, Juan Ramón Jimenez
(76), Spanish poet (Nobel 1956), died.
1958 Dec, Julen Madariaga
helped found ETA. EKIN (engage), a Basque nationalist group,
transformed into Euskadi Ta Askatasuna (E.T.A., Basque Homeland and
Freedom). ETA was the only armed group that emerged in the Spanish
state during Francoism.
1958 New York papers reported
that San Francisco writer and bon vivant Barnaby Conrad was dying
due to a goring wound received in a Spanish bullfight. Conrad
survived and later opened the Matador nightclub in SF.
(SSFC, 11/16/03, p.E3)
1959 Jul 31, In Spain dissident
student members of the Basque Nationalist Party (PNV), inspired by
Marxist-Leninist teachings, formally founded ETA, which stands for
Euskadi ta Askatasuna, meaning Basque Fatherland and Liberty in the
Basque language. Its founders focused on Gen. Francisco Franco's
suppression of the Basque language and culture.
1960 Aug 10, Antonio Banderas,
actor (Phila, Evita, Mambo Kings, was born in Malaga, Spain.
1960 Nov 13, Fire in movie
theater killed 152 children in Amude, Spain.
1961 Jul 15, Spain accepted
equal rights for men and women.
1961 Jul 18, In Spain ETA’s
first violent action tried to derail a train carrying supporters of
dictator Gen. Francisco Franco.
1961 The film "Viridiana" from
Spain was directed by Luis Bunuel.
(SFEC, 4/13/97, DB p.44)
1962 May 14, Princess Sophia of
Greece wed Don Juan Carlos of Spain.
1963 In Spain Amancio Ortega
Gaona began to trade garments. He later founded Inditex, a holding
company of retail brands, which included Zara. By 2005 Inditex had
emerged as one of the world’s fastest-expanding makers of affordable
(Econ, 6/18/05, p.57)
1965 Jan 20, Generalissimo
Francisco Franco met with Jewish representatives to discuss
legitimizing Jewish communities in Spain.
1966 Jan 2, The 1st Jewish
child was born in Spain since the 1492 expulsion.
1966 Jan 17, A US Air Force
B-52 carrying four unarmed hydrogen bombs crashed on the Spanish
coast. Three of the bombs were quickly recovered, but the fourth
wasn't found until April. Two US Air Force jets collided in the
skies over Spanish coastal village of Palomares. The mid-air crash
of the B-52 bomber and a KC-135 refueling plane killed 8 crew
1966 May 27, 6 French fighters
crashed above Spain.
1967 Jan 4, Mohamed Khider
(b.1912), Algerian politician and a leading figure in the FLN, was
assassinated in Madrid, Spain.
1967 Nov 26, Cloudburst over
Lisbon killed 450.
1968 Mar 3, The embassies of
Greece, Portugal and Spain were bombed in the Hague.
1968 May 5, Spain closed its
frontier with Gibraltar. This Followed a referendum in which
Gibraltar's voters were asked whether they wished to become part of
Spain and voted with a resounding no vote.
1968 Jun 7, In Spain ETA, a
Basque Homeland and Freedom separatist group, shot and killed Civil
Guard Jose Pardines Arcay at a checkpoint. This marked ETA’s 1st
killing as it began fighting for independence. Its political wing
was Herri Batasuna.
(SFEC, 7/13/97, p.A11)(SFC, 7/21/97, p.A10)(AP,
1968 Oct 12, Eq. Guinea gained
Independence was from Spain. Eq. Guinea consists of two geographic
entities: the mainland of Rio Muni and the island of Bioko, formerly
Fernando Poo. Francisco Macias became the 1st president and
proclaimed himself God’s "unique miracle." He drove the economy into
the ground and over a third of the population went into exile.
6/29/96, p.A15)(SFC, 5/15/01, p.A10)
1968 James Michener
(1907-1997), American author, wrote his travel book "Iberia," a
detailed and illustrated exploration of Spain at it was during the
1969 Jan 4, Spain returned the
Ifni province to Morocco.
1969 Jan 23, Gregorio Ordonez,
deputy mayor of San Sebastian, Spain, was assassinated by an ETA
1969 Jun 6, Gen. Franco closed
the Gibraltar border with Spain. It stayed closed for 16 years. This
effectively starved Gibraltar of workers while depriving some 9,000
former workers of much-needed jobs and of a right to claim pensions.
The frontier was not fully reopened until 1985.
(WSJ, 4/8/02, p.A8)(AP,
1969 Jun, A block of flats near
Segovia, Spain, collapsed killing 58 people. Developer Jesus Gil y
Gil (1933-2004) was jailed for 5 years for criminal negligence, but
was pardoned after 18 months.
1969 Jul 22, Dictator
Francisco Franco appointed Prince Juan Carlos de Borbon y Borbon as
official successor to the position of Head of State.
1969 The International
Convention for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas entered into
force. ICCAT, with headquarters based in Madrid, Spain, was
established at a Conference of Plenipotentiaries, which prepared and
adopted the convention, signed in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 1966.
(Econ, 11/1/08, p.93)(www.iccat.int/en/)
1970 Jul 3, A British Dan-Air
charter, flying a Comet 4 turbojet, crashed near Barcelona and 112
1970 Airbus Industrie was
formally set up following an agreement between Aerospatiale (France)
and Deutsche Aerospace (Germany). In 1971 it was joined by CASA
(Spain). The name "Airbus" was taken from a nonproprietary term used
by the airline industry in the 1960s to refer to a commercial
aircraft of a certain size and range, as term was acceptable to the
1971 Jun 16, An El Greco
sketch, "The Immaculate Conception," stolen in Spain 35 years
earlier, was recovered in New York City by the FBI.
1972 Pablo Picasso (1881-1973)
drew his chilling crayon self-portrait as a skull.
(SFC, 6/4/96, p.E5)(SFC, 7/14/96, p.C11)
1972 In southwest Spain a train
collided with a bus killing 86 people and injuring 112.
1973 Apr 8, Pablo Picasso
(b.1881), Spanish artist, died at his home near Mougins, France, at
age 91. He left some 50,000 works that included 1,885 paintings,
1,228 sculptures, 2,880 ceramics, 18,095 engravings, 6,112
lithographs, 3,181 linocuts, 7,089 drawings plus 4,669 drawings and
sketches in 149 notebooks, 11 tapestries and 8 rugs. Two books of a
planned 4-volume biography were published by John Richardson, who
then interrupted the series in 2000 with "The Sorcerer’s Apprentice:
Picasso, Provence, and Douglas Cooper." Picasso’s estate owed so
much in death duties that many of his works fell into government
hands. In 2007 John Richardson authored “A Life of Picasso: The
Triumphant Years, 1917-1932.”
(AP, 4/8/97)(SFEC, 1/30/00, BR p.6)(SSFC,
5/20/01, p.T8)(Econ, 11/17/07, p.99)
1973 Aug 6, Fulgencio Batista y
Zaldivar (b.1901), former dictator Cuba (1940-58), died in Spain.
1973 Oct 22, Spanish cellist,
conductor and composer Pablo Casals died in Rio Piedras, Puerto
Rico, at age 96.
1973 Dec 20, ETA killed PM Adm.
Luis Carrero Blanco with a bomb in Madrid.
1973 Salvador Dali (1904-1989),
Spanish artist, painted "Portrait of Alice Cooper's Brain."
1974 Mar 2, In Spain Catalan
activist Salvador Puig (b.1948) became the world’s last person to be
garroted. He was executed by the Francoist regime after being tried
by a military tribunal and found guilty of the death of a Spanish
1974 Sep 12, In its 1st major
attack ETA killed 12 people with a bomb at a Madrid cafe.
1974 The Dali Museum opened in
(SFEC, 7/16/00, p.T4)
1974 The Suresnes Congress in
France handed power over the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party to
Felipe Gonzalez (b.1942), who became prime minister of Spain four
1975 May, Spain moved out of
Spanish Sahara and the native Sahrawi called for independence. Spain
allowed Spanish Sahara (Western Sahara) to go to Morocco and
6/7/00, p.A1)(Econ, 8/28/04, p.76)
1975 Oct 30, Juan Carlos (37)
assumed power in Spain after General Franco, near death, gave him
1975 Nov 20, After nearly four
decades of absolute rule (1936-1975), Spain's General Francisco
Franco died, two weeks before his 83rd birthday. Juan Carlos,
grandson of King Alfonso, was his designated successor and the
monarchy was restored. In 2002 Gabrielle Ashford Hodges authored
"Franco: A Concise Biography."
(SFC, 11/12/96, p.A12)(SFEC, 10/5/97, p.A17)(AP,
11/20/97)(SSFC, 4/21/02, p.M4)
1975 Nov 22, Juan Carlos was
proclaimed king of Spain.
1975 Spain created the
Cervantes Prize, the Spanish speaking world’s highest literary
(SFC, 11/28/08, p.E10)
1975 Rosalia Mera (1944-2013),
a seamstress, and her husband, Armancio Ortega, co-founded a
clothing store in La Coruna, Spain. It grew into Zara, one of the
world's largest retail chains.
1976 Jul 3, Spain’s King Juan
Carlos appointed Adolfo Suarez (1932-2014), a young Francoist
minister, as prime minister in an effort to try to unite Francoists
and anti-Franco socialists, who were still in a sense fighting the
1936-1939 civil war.
1976 Jul 14, Carmelo Soria
(b.1921), a Spanish UN official in Chile, was abducted. His corpse
found two days later in a car sunk in the Canal del Carmen in the
Piramide sector of Santiago de Chile. He was assassinated by Chile's
DINA agents as a part of Operation Condor. Soria was first detained
in the Vía Naranja house in the sector of Lo Curro, shared by DINA
agent Michael Townley.
1976 Nov 18, Spain's parliament
approved a bill to establish a democracy after 37 years of
1976 Dec 11, Hungarian art
forger Elmyr de Hory (b.1906) died of a lethal overdose of
barbiturates in Ibiza, Spain. The 1969 book "Fake" by Clifford
Irving was about De Hory and both Irving and de Hory were featured
in the 1975 Orson Welles film "F" for Fake.
1977 Jun 15, The first general
election in Spain since 1936 resulted in victory for the UCD (Union
of Democratic Centre).
1977 Vicente Aleixandre
(1898-1984), Spanish poet, won the Nobel Prize in Literature.
1977 Spain began experiencing a
(Econ, 9/18/10, p.94)
1978 Jul 11, In Spain 216
people were killed at a camping site when a tanker truck overfilled
with propylene gas exploded on a coastal highway south of Tarragona.
(WUD, 1994, p.1691)(AP, 7/11/97)
1978 Dec 27, King Juan Carlos
ratified Spain's 1st democratic constitution. A parliamentary
monarchy was established with power in the hands of the legislative
branch. Many powers centralized under Franco were devolved to the 17
autonomous regions. Manuel Fraga (1922-2012) helped write the
country's post-Franco, democratic Constitution.
1979 Jun 28, Philippe Cousteau
(b.1940), the youngest son of Jacques Cousteau, was killed while
testing a seaplane near Lisbon.
(SFC, 6/26/97, p.A7)
1979 Pilar Miro (d.1997), film
director, made "The Cuenca Crime," an expose of Civil Guard torture
with graphic violence. It was censored.
1980 Mar 31, In Spain the first
session of the Basque parliament was held in Guernica.
1980 Jul 16, Juan Antonio
Samaranch (b.1920) of Spain was elected president of the Int’l.
Olympic Committee (IOC). His reign lasted 21 years.
1980 Aug 29, Louis Darquier de
Pellepoix (real name Louis Darquier), born in Cahors, France, on
December 19, 1897, died near Malaga (Spain). He was commissioner to
Jewish questions under the Vichy Régime from 1942-1944. In 2006
Carmen Callil authored “A Forgotten History of Family, Fatherland
and Vichy, France.”
1980 In Spain ETA had its
bloodiest year with 91 victims, nearly half of them civilians.
1981 Feb 23, An attempted coup
began in Spain as 200 members of the Civil Guard and some of the
military invaded the Parliament, taking lawmakers hostage. The
attempt, led by Colonel Antonio Tejero, collapsed 18 hours later.
Juan Carlos spoke to the nation on behalf of democracy and the coup
collapsed. In 2011 Javier Cercas authored “The Anatomy of a Moment:
Thirty-Five minutes in History and Imagination,” an examination of
the coup attempt.
(SFC, 11/12/96, p.A12)(AP, 2/23/98)(Econ, 2/4/06,
p.48)(Econ, 3/26/11, p.96)
1981 Apr 23, Josep Pla
(b.1897), Catalan Spanish journalist and popular author, died in his
native Empordà, leaving thirty-eight volumes of Complete Works
published. “It is more difficult to write than to think, much more
difficult: so everyone thinks”.
1981 Sep 10, Pablo Picasso’s
painting Guernica was returned to Spain and installed in Madrid’s
Prado Museum. Picasso had stated in his will that the painting was
not to return to Spain until the Fascists lost power and democracy
1981 Adulterated cooking oil
killed 500  people and more than 20,000 [30,000] remained
disabled in 1996. In the original 1989 trial 13 merchants were
convicted and sentenced to prison. They were also ordered to
compensate the victims but declared bankruptcy. Miguel Hernandez
Bolanos, director of the Central Customs Laboratory, was found
guilty in 1996 of negligence for having written a favorable report
for the industrial oil sold as cooking oil. In 1997 Federico
Povedano Alonso, a former official in charge of agricultural
imports, was also found guilty. Both men received 6-year suspended
(SFC, 5/25/96, p.A11)(SFC, 10/3/97, p.B3)
1982 May 30, Spain
became NATO's 16th member, the first country to enter the Western
alliance since West Germany in 1955.
1982 Oct 28, The Spanish
Socialist Workers’ Party won the elections and Felipe Gonzalez
(b.1942) became prime minister. He served 4 successive mandates and
stepped down as head of the party in 1997.
1982 Oct 31, Pope John Paul II
became the 1st pontiff to visit Spain.
1982 Gala, wife of Salvadore
(SFEC, 7/16/00, p.T5)
1983 Nov 27, In Spain 181
people were killed when a Colombian Avianca Airlines Boeing 747
crashed near Madrid's Barajas airport.
1983 Dec 7, In Madrid, Spain,
an Aviaco DC-9 collided on a runway with an Iberia Air Lines Boeing
727 that was accelerating for takeoff, killing all 42 people aboard
the DC-9 and 51 aboard the Iberia jet.
1983 Dec, Segundo Marey, a
French furniture dealer, was kidnapped from his home in France as a
suspected Basque terrorist. In 1998 former Interior Minister Jose
Barrionuevo and Rafael Vera, former director of state security, were
arrested for the kidnapping and misappropriation of government funds
for the crimes along with Julian Sancristobal, former civil governor
of Vizcaya province.
(SFC, 7/30/98, p.A16)
1983-1987 Spain waged a "dirty war" against Basque
rebels. A former interior minister and 11 others went on trial in
1998 for kidnapping linked to the war in which 27  people were
killed. The killings were attributed to the Anti-Terrorist
Liberation Groups known as GAL.
(SFC, 6/13/96, p.C3)(WSJ, 5/26/98, p.A1)(SFC,
1984 Dec, Spain’s Socialist
government permanently shuttered its nuclear facilities.
(WSJ, 5/10/96, p.A-5D)
1984 In Spain excavations began
in a cave in the Atapuerco mountains at a site called Sima de los
Huesos (the Pit of the Bones). In 2014 a UC Berkeley scientist dated
Neanderthal bones found there to between 410,000 and 470,000 years
1985 Feb 19, 150 were killed
when a Spanish jetliner crashed approaching Bilbao, Spain.
1985 Mar 24, Thousands
demonstrated in Madrid against the NATO presence in Spain.
1985 Mar 29-1985 Mar 30, A
European Council is held in Brussels, Belgium. It accepts the
adhesion of Spain and Portugal in the European Communities and
agrees on the Integrated Mediterranean Programmes (IMP) as proposed
by the Commission.
1985 Apr 12, A bombing in
Madrid, Spain, killed 18 and injured 82. Shia Muslim extremists
(WSJ, 3/12/04, p.A11)
1985 Jun 12, Spain and Portugal
signed Accession Treaties to the European Community.
1985 Jul 20, Divers found the
wreck of Spanish galleon Atocha.
1985 The Socialist government
approved pensions for 60,000 soldiers or their dependents who
supported the losing Republican side in the Civil War.
1986 Jul 14, In Spain Jose
Ignacio De Juana Chaos (b.1955), a former police officer who joined
one of ETA's most active commando units, took part in a Madrid car
bombing. The car bomb on República Dominicana Square killed 12 Civil
Guard policemen. 45 people were wounded.
1986 Spain’s Socialist
government paid $30 million and returned 100 properties to the
Socialist-leaning General Workers Union. In 1997 the union sought an
additional $155 million for hundreds of other properties.
1986 Portugal and Spain entered
the European Union expanding the membership to 12.
(WSJ, 5/23/96, p.A-1)(SFC, 7/18/03, p.D5)(Econ,
6/13/09, SR p.3)
1987 Jan 16, Jose Ignacio De
Juana Chaos (b.1955), a former police officer who joined one of
ETA's most active commando units, was arrested. In 1989 he was
convicted of killing 25 people in a string of attacks, including the
Madrid car bombing that killed 12 Civil Guard policemen on July 14,
1986. In 2008 De Juana Chaos (52) was released from prison after
serving 21 years.
1987 May 13, The Bank of Spain
signed an agreement to join the European Monetary System.
1987 Jun 3, Andres Segovia
(b.1893), Spanish classical guitarist, died in Madrid.
1987 Jun 19, In Spain a bombing
killed 21 people and injured 45. The Hipercor bombing was a car bomb
attack by the Basque separatist organisation ETA at the Hipercor
shopping centre on Avinguda Meridiana, Barcelona, Spain. This was
ETA’s bloodiest attack. In 2003 two top members of the outlawed
Basque separatist group ETA were sentenced to 790 years in prison.
1987 Dec 26, A bomb exploded at
a USO bar in Barcelona, Spain, killing one U.S. sailor and injuring
nine others; a little-known group called the Red Army of Catalonian
Liberation claimed responsibility.
1988 The intelligence agency,
CESID, kidnapped 3 street people to test an experimental
tranquilizer they hoped to use on a fugitive Basque separatist
(SFC, 9/18/96, p.A10)
1989 Jan 23, Surrealist artist
Salvador Dali died in his native Spain at age 84. His autobiography
was titled "Secret Life of Salvadore Dali." His work included 2
surrealist films made with Luis Bunuel: "Un Chien Andalou" and
"L'Age d'Or." In 1984 Rafael Santos Torroella (d.2002 at 88), art
historian, authored "La Miel Es Mas Dulce Que La Sangre" (Honey Is
Sweeter Than Blood), considered one of the most important studies of
Dali’s art. In 1998 Albert Field (d.2003), Dali expert, published
his "Official Catalogue of the Graphic Works of Salvador Dali." In
1999 Ian Gibson published "The Shameful Life of Salvador Dali."
(AP, 1/23/99)(WSJ, 1/25/99, p.A16)(SFEC, 7/16/00,
p.T4)(SFC, 10/4/02, p.A26)(SFC, 8/15/03, p.A25)
1989 Jan, In Spain ETA called
a unilateral truce to help ultimately unsuccessful peace talks in
1989 Jun 19, The Spanish peseta
entered the European Monetary System (EMS) exchange-rate mechanism;
the composition of the ECU is adjusted following the inclusion of
the Spanish peseta and the Portuguese escudo.
1989 Oct 19, Camilo Jose Cela
(d.2002 at 85)) of Spain received the Nobel Prize for literature.
(AP, 10/19/99)(WSJ, 1/18/02, p.A1)
1989 Nov 16, In El Salvador 6
Jesuit priests and two other people were slain by uniformed gunmen
at the Jose Simeon Canas University in an attack later blamed on
army troops. Later 19 Salvadoran soldiers, trained at the US Army
School of the Americas, were linked to the killing. In 2006 US
police in Los Angeles arrested a Salvadoran ex-lieutenant convicted
of killing the 6 Jesuits. In 2009 a Spanish judge opened an
investigation into 14 ex-Salvadoran military officials and
considered indicting them over the killings. In 2009 the 6 Jesuits
were decorated with the country's highest honor. In 2011 20
Salvadorans were indicted in Spain for their alleged roles in the
(AP, 11/16/99)(SFC, 9/21/96, p.A3)(WSJ, 10/27/06,
p.A1)(AP, 1/13/09)(AP, 11/16/09)(SFC, 9/12/12, p.A8)
1989 The 300-sq. km. Donana
wetland, the richest in Europe, was declared a national park. The
belt around Donana was managed by the regional government of
Andalusia. The Madrid government managed the park.
(WSJ, 4/28/98, p.A13)
1989 Thomas Nord Riley (d.2001
at 87) authored "Nord Riley’s Spain," a collection of columns
originally published in Lookout, an English-language magazine
published in Spain.
(SFC, 12/25/01, p.A28)
1989 The Spanish government
paid $350 million for half of the (German-Hungarian)
Thyssen-Bornemusza art collection and provided a substantial gallery
to house the collection. In 2007 David R.L. Litchfield authored “The
Thyssen Art Macabre.”
(Econ, 3/3/07, p.88)
1990 Jul 1, The first phase of
the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) comes into force. Four Member
States (Spain, Portugal, Greece and Ireland) are granted an
exceptional regime given their insufficient progress towards
1991 Feb 5, Pedro Arrupe (83),
Basque priest and head of the Jesuit order, died.
1991 Jul 28, Miguel Indurain of
Spain won the Tour de France bicycle race.
1991 Oct 4, In Madrid, Spain,
26 nations, including the United States, signed the Antarctic
Treaty, which imposed a 50-year ban on oil exploration and mining in
Antarctica. It would be up for review in 2048. China acceded to the
treaty in 1983.
(AP, 10/4/01)(Econ, 11/16/13, p.50)
1991 Oct 30, The Middle East
peace conference in Madrid, Spain, opened with addresses to the
delegates by President George Bush and Soviet President Mikhail S.
Gorbachev. The Madrid Two conference was organized by the US.
(SFC, 6/24/96, p.A10)(WSJ, 9/19/01, p.A14)(AP,
1991 Oct 31, On the second day
of the Middle East peace conference in Madrid, Spain, Israeli Prime
Minister Yitzhak Shamir and Arab delegates clashed bitterly over
1991 Nov 1, The 3-day session
of the Middle East peace conference recessed in Madrid, Spain. The
conference led to Israeli deals with Jordan and the Palestinians and
established the principle of land for peace.
1991 Spain’s economics began a
current account reversal.
(Econ, 8/19/06, p.64)
1992 Jul 25, Opening ceremonies
were held in Barcelona, Spain, for the 25th Summer Olympics.
1992 Jul 26, Miguel Indurain of
Spain won cycling's Tour de France for the second year in a row.
1992 Jul 27, At the Barcelona
Olympics, the U.S. women's 400-meter freestyle relay team won the
1992 Aug 7, Jennifer Capriati
won the gold medal in tennis at the Barcelona Olympics, beating
1992 Nov 25, Spain ratifies the
Treaty on the European Union.
1992 Dec 3, The Greek tanker
Aegean Sea spilled 21.5 million gallons of crude oil when it ran
aground at La Coruna, Spain.
1992 In Spain the suspension
bridge El Puente de las Oblatas was built over the Arga River.
(SSFC, 6/16/02, p.C7)
1992 Spain signed accords with
Islamic, Jewish and Protestant representatives.
(Econ, 7/30/05, p.46)
1992 Leaders of the Basque
Separatist Group (ETA) were captured. The acronym stands for Basque
Homeland and Liberty.
(WSJ, 1/3/96, p.A-6)
1992 Spain opened its first
high-speed rail line, the Alta Velocidad Espanola (AVE), between
Madrid and Seville.
(WSJ, 4/20/09, p.A12)
1992 Eduardo Barreiros
(b.1919), Spanish businessman, died in Havana. He was Spain’s most
important businessman during the middle years of the Franco
dictatorship. In 2009 Hugh Thomas authored “Eduardo Barreiros and
the Recovery of Spain.”
1993 A national hydrological
plan was proposed by Spain’s Socialist government.
(Econ, 1/10/04, p.45)
1993-1996 Felipe Gonzalez led Spain's socialist
(Econ, 11/22/03, p.49)
1994 Jan 31, Barcelona opera
theater "Gran Teatro del Liceo" burned down.
1994 Mar 9, Fernando Rey
(b.1917), Spanish actor (French Connection), died of cancer.
1994 Apr 1, Leon Degrelle
(b.1906), Belgium-born founder of the fascist Rexist party, died in
Malaga, Spain. He was a Walloon Belgian politician, who founded
Rexism and later joined the Nazi German Waffen SS (becoming a leader
of its Walloon contingent). After World War II, he was a prominent
figure in the neo-Nazi and Holocaust denial movements.
1995 Mar 18, Spain's Princess
Elena married a banker, Jaime de Marichalar y Saenz de Tejada, in
Seville; it was Spain's first royal wedding in 89 years.
1995 Apr 1, In Spain infantry
brigadier Mariano de Juan Santamaria was shot in the head in the
northern city of San Sebastian. In 2014 ETA member Juan Ramon
Carasatorre Aldaz (52) was sentenced to 29 years for the killing.
Two others were already sentenced for taking part in the same crime.
1995 Apr 19, In Spain a failed
ETA car-bomb attempted to kill conservative opposition leader and
future Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar.
1995 Nov 22, In Spain Juan
Holgado (26), who dabbled in modeling and dreamt of playing pro
soccer, was stabbed to death by robbers while working the graveyard
shift at a gas station, filling in for a colleague as a favor. The
four suspects were repeatedly picked up and released.
1995 Nov, The Barcelona
Process, launched by Euro-Mediterranean Foreign Ministers, formed an
innovative alliance based on the principles of joint ownership,
dialogue and co-operation. It brings together the 27 Members of the
European Union and 12 Southern Mediterranean states. Economic
incentives and the strengthening of civil society were used to
1995 Dec11, A car bomb killed
six and injured 15 in southern Madrid. Authorities suspected Basque
(WSJ, 12/12/95, p.A-1)
1995 Dec, Foreign Minister
Javier Solana was elected as secretary of NATO.
(WSJ, 12/4/95, p.A-9)
1995 Bilbao on the Nervin River
opened a subway system designed by British architect Norman Foster.
(SFEM, 2/1/98, p.11)
1995 Spain and Morocco agreed
to build a channel tunnel under the Strait of Gibraltar. The plan
was for 3 tunnels at a cost of $4 bil.
(WSJ, 6/18/96, p.A10)
1995 In Spain the Asocamu group
was set up to promote rural re-population by organizing parties for
single men and woman.
1996 Jan 17, In Spain ETA
abducted a prison officer and held him for 532 days.
1996 Mar 4, In Spain the
conservative Popular Party under Jose Maria Aznar won general
elections over PM Felipe Gonzalez and ended 13 years of Socialist
rule. The national government created an Environment Ministry.
Previously the environment was the responsibility of the Public
(WSJ, 3/4/96, p. A-1)(SFEC, 4/20/97, p.A17)
1996 Jun 9, The latest
unemployment rate was 22.5%.
(SFC, 6/9/96, Parade, p.9)
1996 Jun 10, The new
center-right government introduced sweeping economic measures. Taxes
were eased on small and mid-size companies, savings and job creation
were encouraged, the powerful professional guilds were weakened and
various markets liberalized, and double taxation for large foreign
companies was eliminated.
(WSJ, 6/11/96, p.A9A)
1996 Jun 12, Judge Jose Jimenez
Alfaro lost most of his right hand when a letter bomb exploded at
his courthouse in Madrid. He had sent policemen to jail for Spain’s
"dirty war" war on Basque rebels in the 1980s.
(SFC, 6/13/96, p.C3)
1996 Jul 20, The Basque
separatist group ETA set off 3 bombs at tourist sites. One at the
airport of Reus, and 2 at the beach resorts of Cambrils and Salou.
(SFC, 7/21/96, p.A18)
1996 Aug 7, Flash floods in the
Pyranees killed at least 71 people at a campground.
(WSJ, 8/9/96, p.A1)
1996 Oct 6, At the Tokyo Int’l.
film festival a special jury prize went to the Spanish film
"Libertarias" by Vicente Aranda.
(SFEC, 10/7/96, D3)
1996 Spain's Magic Box Int'l.
introduced Crazy Bones to Europe, popcorn-size plastic figures for
kids to use in their own games. They reached the US market in 1997
and by 1999 were a major craze.
(WSJ, 2/4/99, p.B1)
1996 Spanish chemist Pilar
Mateo patented a microencapsulation technique that embedded
pesticides into house paints.
(SSFC, 5/20/12, p.F3)
1997 Feb 10, A Supreme Court
Justice, Rafael Martinez Emperador, was shot dead in Madrid. In
Grenada a car bomb exploded and killed one person and wounded 7.
Guerrillas of the ETA, Basque Homeland and Liberty, were blamed.
(USAT, 2/11/97, p.5A)
1997 Feb 17, A Basque court
guard, Modesto Rico Pasarin (33), was killed by a car bomb
attributed to the ETA. He was the 4th victim in a week.
(SFC, 2/18/96, p.A8)
1997 Mar 2, Matadors across the
country went on strike as the bullfighting season opened. They
favored a policy of shaving bull’s horns that was opposed by the
(SFEC, 3/3/97, p.A12)
1997 Mar 4, Matadors agreed to
go back to work but the bull horn issue remained unsettled.
(SFC, 3/5/97, p.A9)
1997 Mar 31, A passenger train
north of Pamplona derailed and killed at least 22 and injured some
(WSJ, 4/1/97, p.A1)
1997 Apr 19, A Barcelona court
found Jose Puignero, factory owner, guilty of illegally dumping
chemical dyes into a river in the town of Sant Bartomeu del Grau.
This was the first punishment for crimes against the environment
ever handed out.
(SFEC, 4/20/97, p.A17)
1997 Apr 21, The ashes of
Timothy Leary, Gene Roddenberry and 22 others were fired into space
aboard a rocket that carried the first Spanish satellite,
MINI-SAT-01, into orbit.
(SFC, 4/22/97, p.A3)
1997 May 3, Narciso Yepes,
Spanish classical guitarist, died at age 69. His interpretation of
Rodrigo’s "Concert of Aranjuez" was one of his greatest
achievements. He designed a 10-string guitar suited to Baroque
(SFC, 5/5/97, p.A20)
1997 May 29, Spanish scientists
announced a new human species in 780,000 year old fossil.
1997 May 31, Thousands of olive
oil workers protested in Madrid against the EU plan to force a cut
in olive oil production and to lower subsidies.
(SFEC, 6/1/97, p.D1)
1997 Jun 5, The parliament
approved a labor reform pact to reduce the 22% unemployment.
(SFC, 6/6/97, p.E2)
1997 Jun 20, Former prime
minister Felipe Gonzalez quit as the leader of the Spanish Socialist
Party. He was succeeded by Joaquin Almunia.
(WSJ, 6/23/97, p.A1)
1997 Jul 10, Miguel Angel
Blanco was kidnapped by the ETA.
(SFEC, 7/13/97, p.A11)
1997 Jul 12, ETA kidnapped
small town politician Miguel Angel Blanco and demanded that the
group's prisoners be brought to Basque jails. Blanco was found
mortally dead shortly after a deadline. His slaying triggered
widespread demonstrations in Spain.
(AP, 7/12/98)(AP, 3/22/06)
1997 Jul 13, In San Sebastian
Miguel Angel Blanco (29), a Basque town councilor and low-ranking
member of the Popular Party of Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar, died
of head wounds from the ETA, Basque Homeland and Freedom, a Basque
separatist group. Almost 800 people have died since the ETA began
fighting in 1968.
(SFEC, 7/13/97, p.A11)
1997 Jul 14, More than 2
million people took to the streets across Spain to mourn the death
of Miguel Angel Blanco and to condemn the Basque separatist
guerrillas who killed him.
(SFC, 7/15/97, p.A10)
1997 Jul 27, In San Sebastian,
some 30,000 marched in support of the ETA separatist movement.
(SFC, 7/28/97, p.A11)
1997 Oct 4, Princess Christina
Federica de Borbon y Grecia (32) married Inaki Urdangarin (29), a
Basque professional handball team player.
(SFEC, 10/5/97, p.A17)
1997 Oct 14, A separatist
guerrilla group killed a policeman while trying to bomb the new
Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao. Jose Maria Aguirre was killed when he
helped foil the ETA attack. One of three gunmen, Kepa Arronnategui,
(SFC,10/16/97, p.A14)(SFC,10/18/97, p.A10)
1997 Oct 18, There was an
attempt to assassinate Spain's King Juan Carlos. In 2011 British
officers arrested Eneko Gogeaskoetxea Arronategui (44), a suspected
Basque separatist, in connection with the attempted assassination.
1997 Oct 19, In Bilbao the new
Guggenheim Museum Bilbao opened. The 256,000 sq. ft. titanium,
limestone and glass structure was designed by American
(Canadian-born) architect Frank Gehry and funded entirely by the
Basque regional government under the direction of Thomas Krens,
director of the Guggenheim.
(WSJ, 7/2/96, p.A12)(USAT, 10/8/97, p.1D)(WSJ,
1997 Oct 19, Pilar Miro, film
director, died in Madrid at age 57. Her films included
"Beltenebros," "Gary Cooper Is in Heaven," "Bird of Happiness," "The
Dog in the Manger," and the 1979 expose "The Cuenca Crime."
1997 Oct, The 23-member
leadership council of Herri Batasuna was arrested for distributing a
video that presented the ETA's terms for peace.
(SFC, 5/24/99, p.A4)
1997 Nov 6, Flooding of the
Guadiana River killed 18 people in Badajoz. A total of 31 died along
the Spanish-Portuguese border from the storm induced flood.
1997 Dec 1, Spain’s Supreme
Court convicted 23 leaders of the Herri Batsuna (Unified Country)
Basque separatist coalition. Each was sentenced to 7 years in prison
and fined $3,500. In 1999 the Constitutional Court annulled the
sentences and 22 leaders were released.
(SFC, 12/2/97, p.A10)(SFC, 7/21/99, p.A12)
1997 Dec 2, The National Court
found journalists Fernando Alonso and Andoni Murga guilty of weapons
possession and membership in the ETA and sentenced them to 39 years
each in prison.
(SFC, 12/3/97, p.C5)
1997 Dec 5, In San Sebastian a
politician’s bodyguard was shot to death hours before authorities
arrested 19 of 23 leaders of the pro-Basque independence party,
Herri Batasuna. Protestors also commandeered a bus and burned it.
1997 Dec 11, Jose Luis Caso, a
former town councilor in Renteria, was killed by two suspected
Basque separatists in Irun.
1997 Dec 13, Tens of thousands
marched in San Sebastian to protest the murder of Jose Luis Caso.
1997 Dec 27, In Bilbao
thousands marched on behalf of the 23 Basque separatists of the
Herri Batasuna separatist group, who were recently sentenced to 7
years each in prison.
1997 Dec 30, A Spanish judge
accused 36 Argentine military and police officers of involvement in
torture and the disappearance of 600 Spaniards during the dirty war
from 1976-1983. Most of those named served in the ESMA, a torture
center used by the military regime.
1997 Goya's 18th-century "The
Apparition of the Virgin of Pilar" and el Greco's 16th-century "The
Annunciation," were stolen after a private exhibition tour. In 2011
Spanish police recovered the stolen masterpieces at a private house
near the southeastern city of Alicante.
1997 Mohamad Kamal Mustafa,
imam of Fuengirola, Spain, authored “Women in Islam,” in which he
defended a husband’s right to beat his wife.
(WPR, 3/04, p.11)
1997 Jerome Mintz (d.1997 at
67), US anthropologist, published "Carnival, Song and Society:
Gossip, Sexuality and Creativity in Andalusia." He had earlier
produced 6 films about tradition and change in Andalusia.
1997 The film "The
Disappearance of Garcia Lorca" was directed by Puerto Rican Marcos
Zurinaga. It was based two books by Ian Gibson that describe the
story of a journalist who returned to Spain in 1954 to seek the
murderer of the poet Federico Garcia Lorca.
(SFC, 9/8/97, p.D5)
1997 The documentary film
"Flamenco" was filmed by Vittorio Storaro in an abandoned train
station in Seville.
(SFC, 9/8/97, p.D5)(AP, 9/18/97)
1997 The Spanish film "Mouth to
Mouth" was directed by Peter Cattaneo. It was about an actor
struggling to survive in Madrid while working at a phone-sex
(WSJ, 9/16/97, p.A20)
1997 The German film
"Ballermann 6" was about a bar by the same name on the Spanish
Island of Majorca.
(WSJ, 12/4/97, p.A1)
1997 Luis Antonio Garcia
Navarro (d.2001) was named music and artistic director at the
long-closed Teatro Real in Madrid.
(SFC, 10/18/01, p.A21)
1997 Pernod Ricard SA acquired
the Spanish gin Larios.
(WSJ, 9/7/05, p.B2)
1998 Jan 30, Alberto Jimenz
Becerril, a Popular Party Councilman, and his wife, Asuncion Garcia
Ortiz, were assassinated in Seville.
(SFEC, 2/1/98, p.A12)
1998 Apr 25, A wall of acidic
toxic liquid, 5 million cubic meters, broke free from a Aznalcollar
mine waste lagoon near Seville and threatened the 300-sq. ml. Donana
National Park. The tainted water was diverted to the Guadalquivir
River and then to the Gulf of Cadiz. 13,300 acres of cropland were
expected to be left barren for 25 years due to the spill.
(WSJ, 4/27/98, p.A1)(WSJ, 4/28/98, p.A13)(SFC,
1998 Jun 23, A Boeing 727 with
131 people was hijacked and diverted to Valencia.
(SFC, 6/23/98, p.A11)
1998 Jul 11, It was reported
that tens of thousands of rotting fish were left when a section of
the Llobregat River was drained too fast to fill a repaired
(SFC, 7/11/98, p.A8)
1998 Aug 31, Jose Antonio
Ardanza, 14-year president of the Basque country, dissolved the
regional parliament and set elections for Oct 25. He urged ETA
extremists to lay down their arms.
(SFC, 9/1/98, p.A9)
1998 Sep 16, The Basque
separatist ETA announced an indefinite cease fire to begin Sep 18.
It ended 14 months later after one round of talks with the Aznar
government. PM Jose Maria Aznar responded with a hard-line crackdown
that ended cooperation between Basque moderates and Spanish
(SFC, 9/17/98, p.C4)(SFC, 5/24/99, p.A1)(AP,
1998 Oct 8, In northeastern
Spain and excursion boat capsized and sank on Lake Banyoles and 20
French tourists were drowned.
(WSJ, 10/8/98, p.A1)
1998 Oct 17, In Britain former
Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet was arrested in a London medical
clinic following a request from Spain for his extradition. Chilean
officials lodged a formal complaint to Britain.
(SFEC, 10/18/98, p.A1)
1998 Oct 19, A Spanish judge
filed a motion for the extradition of Gen’l. Pinochet from England
that encompassed 94 cases of genocide, as well as the deaths of 79
Spaniards who were killed in Chile after being abducted by an
alliance of south American intelligence services.
(SFC, 10/20/98, p.A8)
1998 Oct 30, Spanish judges
ruled that Spain had the legal right to bring criminal charges
against Augusto Pinochet and to seek his extradition from Britain.
(SFC, 10/31/98, p.A12)
1998 Nov 3, Prime Minister Jose
Aznar authorized preliminary talks with the Basque ETA.
(SFC, 11/4/98, p.A12)
1998 Dec 19, Antonio Ordonez,
bullfighter, died at age 66. His career was chronicled in a
(WSJ, 12/21/98, p.A1)
1998 Dec 30, Joan Brossa, poet,
died in Barcelona at age 79. He published poems in Catalan and
founded a surrealist magazine in 1948 with Antoni Tapies.
(SFC, 1/2/99, p.C2)
1998 Spain deregulated its
1998 Ramon Sampredro, a Spanish
paraplegic who campaigned for euthanasia and spent 30 years in bed,
died by sipping water laced with cyanide. He did this after crafting
a complex scheme to have friends prepare and deliver the poison in
incremental steps so no single one of them could be charged
criminally. The story was made into the movie "El Mar Adentro" (The
Sea Inside), which won an Oscar for best foreign film in 2005.
1999 Jan 1, The Maastricht
Treaty specified that a monetary union will be established by this
date, and laid down several criteria that EU nations must fulfill in
order to join. Some of the criteria included: maximum budget
deficits of 3% of GDP, a cap on government debt of 60% of GDP. The
European economic and monetary union (EMU) was scheduled to start
with a new "Euro" currency. Austria, Belgium, Finland, France,
Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and
Spain made the transition. Public use was set for Jan 1, 2002.
(WSJ, 9/25/95, p.A-12)(WSJ, 12/5/95, p.A-14)(SFC,
11/16/96, p.A1)(SFC, 1/1/99, p.A8)
1999 Mar 10, Nine Basque
separatists were arrested.
(WSJ, 3/11/99, p.A1)
1999 Mar 20, Some 60,000 people
marched in Bilbao to protest recent arrests of members and
supporters of the ETA.
(SFEC, 3/21/99, p.A23)
1999 Jun 14, Dolores Jimenez, a
leading flamenco singer known as La Nina de la Puebla, died at age
90 in Malaga.
(SFC, 6/16/99, p.B4)
1999 Jul 6, Joaquin Rodrigo,
classical composer, died at age 97 in Madrid. His best known work
was "Concierto de Aranjuez."
(SFC, 7/8/99, p.A19)
1999 Jul 22, Claudio Rodriguez,
poet, died at age 65.
(SFC, 7/23/99, p.D6)
1999 Oct 7, In Barcelona the
Gran Teatre del Liceu opera house opened after a 3-year, $120
million renovation due to a 1994 fire.
(SFC, 10/8/99, p.C10)
1999 Nov 28, The Basque ETA
announced that it would end a 14-month cease-fire due to inaction
over their call for independence.
(SFC, 11/29/99, p.A12)
1999 Nov, In Spain Ekin, a
civic support organization for the Basque separatist group ETA, was
formed with the aim of "impelling independence, nation-building and
socialism at street level." On Oct 1, 2011, the Gara newspaper's
website said two unidentified spokesmen told it that "Ekin members
have ended their endeavors as an organization."
1999 Dec 22, Police found a 2nd
van loaded with 1,650 pounds of explosives in Alhama de Aragon. Two
days earlier a van, bound for Madrid, was stopped with 1,980 pounds
(SFC, 12/24/99, p.A20)
1999 Mark Kurlansky authored
"The Basque History of the World."
(SFEC, 10/17/99, Par p.20)
1999 The Spanish film "Barrio"
was written and directed by Fernando Leon de Aranoa.
(SFEC, 4/11/99, DB p.37)
1999 The Spanish film "Open
Your Eyes" was directed by Alejandro Amenabar.
(WSJ, 4/16/99, p.W1)
1999 In Bilbao the Euskalduna
Palace of Congresses and Music was completed with the design by
Federico Soriano and Dolores Palacios.
(WSJ, 11/23/99, p.A21)
1999 Parliament approved an
amnesty for illegal immigrants and authorized visas for those able
to prove that they had arrived before July 1, 1999.
(SFC, 8/11/00, p.D4)
1999 Spain’s Ferrovial, led by
Rafael del Pino, went public.
(Econ, 7/7/07, p.67)
2000 Jan 21, In Madrid Basque
separatists ended a 19-month lull in their guerrilla war with a
remote bomb that killed Lt. Col. Pedro Antonio Blanco Garcia (48).
(SFC, 1/22/00, p.A10)
2000 Jan 23, Some 1.1 million
people marched in Madrid to protest the recent car-bomb attack by
(SFC, 1/24/00, p.A6)
2000 Feb 22, A car bomb killed
Fernando Buesa, a Socialist Party leader in Vitoria, and his
bodyguard Jorge Diez Elorza (27).
(SFC, 2/23/00, p.A14)
2000 Mar 12, The conservative
Popular Party under Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar won the general
election with 44.7% of the vote. The party won 183 of the 350 seats
in Congress of Deputies.
(SFC, 3/13/00, p.A10)
2000 May 7, Jose Luis Lopez de
La Calle, a columnist for El Mundo, was shot and killed in Andoain.
The ETA was blamed.
(SFC, 5/8/00, p.A13)
2000 Jul 6, A bus enroute to a
summer camp for teens collided with a truck hauling pigs near Soria
and at least 25 people were killed.
(SFC, 7/7/00, p.D6)
2000 Jul 10, DASA (minus MTU)
merged with Aerospatiale-Matra of France and Construcciones
Aeronáuticas SA (CASA) of Spain to form the European Aeronautic
Defence and Space Company (EADS). DASA was founded as Deutsche
Aerospace AG on May 19, 1989 by the merger of Daimler-Benz's
aerospace interests (MTU, Dornier and two divisions of AEG). In July
1989 the two AEG divisions were themselves merged within Deutsche
Aerospace to form Telefunken Systemtechnik (TST). In December 1989
Daimler-Benz acquired Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm (MBB) and merged it
2000 Jul 12, A car bomb
exploded at the entrance of the Corte Ingles department store in
Madrid. 10 people were injured.
(SFC, 7/13/00, p.C4)
2000 Jul 18, Jose Angel
Valente, poet, died at age 71. He wrote in Spanish and Galician and
published his 1st poems in 1947.
(SFC, 7/19/00, p.B2)
2000 Jul 25, A 100-foot-high
gusher burst forth in the city of Granatula in central Spain as
olive growers were deepening a well.
(SFC, 9/9/00, p.A22)
2000 Jul 29, A Socialist
politician was killed and Basque separatists were blamed.
(WSJ, 7/31/00, p.A1)
2000 Aug 7, A bomb exploded in
Bilbao and killed 3 suspected Basque separatists, who appeared to be
(SFC, 8/8/00, p.A12)
2000 Aug 8, A car bomb exploded
in Madrid, where 11 people were injured and in Zumaia where 1 man
was killed. The ETA was blamed.
(SFC, 8/9/00, p.A14)
2000 Aug 9, Francisco Casanova
Vicente, army officer, was shot twice in the back as he arrived home
in Pamplona. The murder was blamed on the ETA.
(SFC, 8/10/00, p.A11)
2000 Aug 20, A bomb killed 2
Spanish Civil Guard officers in Sallent de Gallego. The ETA was
(SFC, 8/21/00, p.A8)
2000 Aug 29, Manuel Indiano
(29), a councilman in Zumarraga, was shot and killed outside his
candy store. The ETA was blamed.
(SFC, 8/30/00, p.B10)
2000 Sep 13, Masked police
raided the EKIN offices, the fund-raising wing of the ETA. 20 people
(SFC, 9/14/00, p.C5)
2000 Sep 14, Ramon Rekalde, a
former Socialist Party official, was wounded with a shot in the head
in San Sebastian. The ETA was blamed.
(SFC, 9/15/00, p.D2)
2000 Sep 15, Truckers across
Europe blocked highways to protest high fuel costs. Protests hit
Spain, Germany, Ireland, Poland and the Czech Republic.
(SFC, 9/16/00, p.A10)
2000 Sep 21, Jose Luis Ruiz
Casado (42), a town councilor, was shot and killed in Sant Adria de
Besos outside of Barcelona. The ETA was blamed.
(SFC, 9/22/00, p.D2)
2000 Oct 9, Luis Portero, a
head state attorney for the Andalusian Superior Court, was shot to
death in Granada. The ETA was suspected.
(SFC, 10/10/00, p.A13)
2000 Oct 16, Col. Antonio Munoz
Carinanos (58), a military doctor, was killed in Seville by 3
suspected Basque gunmen. 2 suspects were arrested.
(WSJ, 10/17/00, p.A1)(SFC, 10/18/00, p.A26)
2000 Oct 22, Maximo Casada
Carrera (44), a prison officer, was killed by a car bomb in Vitoria.
The ETA was blamed.
(SFC, 10/23/00, p.A11)
2000 Oct 30, In Madrid a car
bomb killed Supreme Court magistrate Jose Francisco Querol (69), his
driver and an escort. 35 were wounded and the ETA was blamed.
(SFC, 10/31/00, p.A12)(WSJ, 10/31/00, p.A1)
2000 Nov 21, Ernest Lluch (63),
a former government minister, was killed by suspected ETA gunmen in
a Barcelona suburb.
(SFC, 11/22/00, p.C6)
2000 Nov 22, The government
reported its 1st case of mad cow disease.
(SFC, 11/23/00, p.D6)
2002 The Web site Hoopshype.com
was started by 3 young men from Spain. By 2008 the site was
attracting half a million unique visitors a month.
(WSJ, 3/21/08, p.W1)
2000 The Bank of Spain began
requiring leading banks to set aside a portion of profits against
(Econ, 2/19/11, p.78)
2002 Spain planed to abolish
the draft by the end of this year and to reduce its military to
(SFEC, 10/31/99, p.A28)
2000 Spanish journalist Emilio
Silva was shown where his grandfather was buried. The mass grave in
El Bierzo contained dozens of other victims of Francoist repression.
Spaniards across the country soon began reporting on thousands of
victims buried in similar unmarked graves.
(Econ, 3/13/10, p.63)
2001 Jan 1, A weekend storm
killed 7 people, including 5 in the Pyranees.
(SFC, 1/2/01, p.A10)
2001 Jan 3, A commuter train
hit a van near Lorca and 12 Ecuadoran farm workers were killed.
(WSJ, 1/04/01, p.A1)
2001 Jan 24, Portugal Telecom
and Spain’s Telefonica announced today the formation of a US$ 10
billion Strategic Joint Venture ("JV") for mobile services in
Brazil. The resulting entity, named Vivo, was formed from seven
assorted mobile units they already controlled.
(Econ, 5/22/10, p.71)(http://tinyurl.com/2cxlgd4)
2001 Feb 4, A crowd of 10-40
thousand marched in Barcelona to protest a tough new against illegal
(SFC, 2/5/01, p.A8)
2001 Feb 22, Two people were
killed when suspected Basque separatists bombed a train station in
San Sebastian. Separately French police arrested the alleged ETA
(WSJ, 2/23/01, p.A1)
2001 Mar 11, Over 100,000
people protested in Madrid against a $23 billion plan to divert
water from the Ebro river to areas in the south.
(SFC, 3/12/01, p.A14)
2001 Mar 17, Santos Santamaria
Avedano (32), a police officer, was killed when a car bomb went off
as he evacuated guests from a hotel in Roses.
(SFC, 3/19/01, p.A9)
2001 Mar 20, Froilan Elespe,
Socialist deputy mayor of Lasarte, was shot and killed. The ETA was
(SFC, 3/21/01, p.A14)
2001 May 6, Manuel Jimenez Abad
(52), a politician of the ruling Popular Party, was shot to death in
(SFC, 5/7/01, p.C3)
2001 May 13, Basque elections
were held in Spain. Nationalists won the regional elections.
(WSJ, 5/11/01, p.A1)(SFC, 5/14/01, p.A9)
2001 May 24, In San Sebastian
Santiago Oleaga Elejabarrieta (54), financial director of the El
Diario Vasco daily newspaper, was shot and killed. The ETA was
(SFC, 5/25/01, p.D6)
2001 Jun 10, In Spain thousands
marched in Madrid to protest an upcoming visit by Pres. Bush.
(SFC, 6/11/01, p.A10)
2001 Jun 12, Pres. Bush on his
1st major overseas trip met with Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar in
Madrid and pushed for his missile defense shield.
(SFC, 6/11/01, p.A10)(SFC, 6/13/01, p.A1)
2001 Jun 28, A parcel bomb in
Madrid injured Gen. Justo Oreja Pedraza (63), a defense minister,
along with 15 others. The ETA was blamed.
(SFC, 6/29/01, p.D4)
2001 Jul 10, In Madrid a
policeman was killed by a bomb. Basque rebels were blamed.
(WSJ, 7/12/01, p.A1)
2001 Jul 14, In Spain gunmen
shot and killed a police officer, Mikel Uribe (44), in Leaburu and a
bomb killed a local politician, Jose Javier Mugica (50), in Leiza.
The ETA was blamed.
(SSFC, 7/15/01, p.A18)
2001 Aug 18, A Basque rebel car
bomb exploded outside 2 resort hotels in Salou.
(WSJ, 8/20/01, p.A1)
2001 Aug 27, A Basque bomb went
off in the parking structure of Madrid’s main airport. There were no
injuries due to a phoned in tip.
(WSJ, 8/28/01, p.A1)
2001 Aug 29, A Binter
Mediterraneo CN-235 airplane crash-landed near Malaga’s airport and
at least 3 of 47 people aboard were killed.
(WSJ, 8/30/01, p.A1)
2001 Sep 26, Spain detained 6
Algerians with alleged links to Osama bin Laden and a group planning
attacks on US targets in Europe.
(SFC, 9/27/01, p.A3)
2001 Oct 1, In Spain suspected
Basque militants exploded a car bomb in Vitoria that caused much
damage to the city center.
(WSJ, 10/2/01, p.A1)
2001 Oct 4, The EU made a joint
announcement with Spain that the Basque ETA would be put on the list
of terrorist organizations whose assets would be frozen by the EU.
(WSJ, 10/5/01, p.A1)
2001 Oct 12, A bombing caused
wide damage in Madrid. Basque separatists were suspected.
(WSJ, 10/15/01, p.A1)
2001 Nov 6, In Madrid a rush
hour car bomb blast injured 95 people. The ETA was suspected and a
man and woman were arrested.
(SFC, 11/7/01, p.A13)
2001 Nov 7, Judge Jose Maria
Lidon Corbi was shot to death as he drove out of his garage in
Gexto, a suburb of Bilbao. The ETA was held responsible.
(SFC, 11/8/01, p.A19)
2001 Nov 13, Spanish police
arrested 11 people with suspected links to Osama bin Laden.
(SFC, 11/14/01, p.A6)
2001 Nov 18, In Spain 8 men
detained last week were reported to be members of the al Qaeda
network and to have played a role in the Sep 11 attacks.
(SFC, 11/19/01, p.A5)
2001 Nov 23, Spain set terms
for extradition of 8 men charged with complicity in the Sep 11
attacks that included trial by a civilian court. 2 policemen were
killed in Beasain.
(SFC, 11/24/01, p.A1)(WSJ, 11/26/01, p.A1)
2001 Carlos Ruiz Zafon authored
“The Shadow of the Wind.” It became a best seller in Spain and in
2004 was translated into English by Lucia Graves.
(Econ, 4/3/04, p.87)
2002 Jan 17, Camilo Jose Cela
(85), novelist and 1989 Noble Prize winner, died in Madrid.
(WSJ, 1/18/02, p.A1)
2002 Jan 19, Spain arrested 2
suspected members of al Qaeda.
(SSFC, 1/20/02, p.A4)
2002 Feb, Bruge 2002 opened. It
had been named as one of two Cultural Capitals of Europe for this
year. The other was Salamanca, Spain.
(SSFC, 2/24/02, p.C5)
2002 Mar 18, Police discovered
at least 19 corpses at the home and car of an ex-funeral parlor
employee in Malaga.
(SFC, 3/20/02, p.A10)
2002 Mar 21, A local Spanish
official was shot to death by gunmen in the Basque region. Police
suspected the ETA.
(WSJ, 3/22/02, p.A1)
2002 Apr 23, Spanish police
arrested Mohamed Zouaydi on charges of financing terrorist
activities around the world.
(SFC, 4/25/02, p.A9)
2002 May 1, In Madrid a bomb
exploded near a sports stadium and 17 people were injured.
(SFC, 5/2/02, p.A11)
2002 May 14, Police arrested 2
suspected ETA members who planned to bomb an upcoming meeting of
Latin American and European leaders.
(SFC, 5/16/02, p.A8)
2002 Jun 5, Carlos Berlanga
(42), pop singer and composer, died. He was associated with the La
Movida (The Happening) arts movement that surfaced after Franco’s
death in 1975.
(SFC, 6/11/02, p.A22)
2002 Jun 15, In Spain tens of
thousands of people marched through Bilbao protesting the
government’s intention to outlaw a political party that refuses to
condemn terrorism in the name of independence.
2002 Jun 21, Two car bombs
exploded at Spanish coastal resort as a European Union summit got
under way about 90 miles away at a heavily guarded convention center
2002 Jun 22, In Spain it was
reported that police had found 10 of 17 artworks stolen last year
from the collection of a Spanish billionaire, including paintings by
Goya, Pissarro and Breughel.
2002 Jun 22, Two new bombs
rocked Spain's tourist coasts, making five in two days that the
government blamed on Basque separatist group ETA trying to disrupt a
European Union summit in Seville.
2002 Jun 22, Tens of thousands
of people banged drums, blew whistles and danced their way through
Seville's streets in a rally against globalization. The EU Summit
ended with new measures to deter illegal immigration.
(AP, 6/22/02)(SSFC, 6/23/02, p.A22)
2002 Jul 5, In Spain a judge
froze all bank accounts of Batasuna, the radical Basque political
(SSFC, 7/7/02, p.A18)
2002 Jul 7, The 14th Int’l.
AIDS Conference opened in Barcelona. Estimates said AIDS had claimed
20 million lives to date and threatened 40 million currently
infected. African cases were estimated at 28.5 million.
(SFC, 7/5/02, p.A1)(SSFC, 7/7/02, p.A6)
2002 Jul 11, Moroccan soldiers
planted a national flag on Perejil Island (parsley in Spanish), 200
yards off the coast near Ceuta. Spain had claimed control since the
17th century. Moroccans called the 0.58-square mile rocky outcrop
Leila (night in Arabic). Spanish troops swiftly dislodged the
Moroccans without a shot being fired. Under a diplomatic resolution,
both sides agreed to leave it as a no man's land.
(SSFC, 7/14/02, p.A20)(SFC, 7/20/02, p.A10)(AP,
2002 Jul 17, Spanish troops
reclaimed the island of Perejil off the coast of Morocco, a week
after it was occupied by Moroccan troops.
(WSJ, 7/18/02, p.A1)(SFC, 7/18/02, p.A17)
2002 Jul 22, Morocco and Spain,
prodded by the US, agreed to leave Perjil Island empty and free of
symbols of sovereignty and planned for future talks on the issue.
(SFC, 7/23/02, p.A8)
2002 Jul 25, The Spanish
government welcomed a British proposal to turn its military base in
Gibraltar into a NATO facility, a move that would open it to all
alliance members including Spain. Spain and Britain came up with the
idea of sharing sovereignty over the Rock. This was rejected
resoundingly in a nonbinding referendum in Gibraltar.
(AP, 7/25/02)(AP, 9/19/06)
2002 Aug 4, In southeastern
Spain 2 people, including a 6-year-old girl, were killed and several
others were injured when a car bomb exploded in front of a military
police barracks. Twenty-five others were injured.
2002 Aug 19, Eduardo Chillida
(78), Basque sculptor, died. He created monumental works and
promoted peace in the Basque region. His work included "The Comb of
the Winds," an iron tangle in San Sebastian.
(SFC, 8/21/02, p.A19)
2002 Sep 24, In Spain a
booby-trapped sign bearing the logo of the armed Basque separatist
group ETA exploded, killing one police officer and wounding three
2002 Oct 6, Pope John Paul II
raised to sainthood Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer the Spanish priest
who founded the conservative Catholic organization Opus Dei (1928),
only 27 years after his death.
2002 Oct 25, In Spain Jose
Antonio Rodriguez Vega (44), a serial killer sentenced to 440 years
in jail for raping and strangling 16 elderly widows, was murdered in
prison. Two prisoners with makeshift knives attacked Vega in the
courtyard of Topas jail in western Salamanca province.
2002 Nov 13, The
Bahamian-registered Prestige, with 85,000 tons of oil, sprang a leak
during a storm off the coast of Spain. Some 3,300 tons leaked and
began reaching the coast of Spain after a few days.
2002 Nov 19, The Prestige oil
tanker, carrying 20 million gallons of fuel oil, broke in two and
sank in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Spain. It leaked up to
1.02 million gallons of oil and threatened a spill nearly twice as
big as the Exxon Valdez in 1989. Leakage continued at some 33,000
gallons per day and could drain until 2006. Spain later put the
estimated cost of the Prestige oil tanker spill at least $1.05
billion. In 2013 a judge acquitted crew members and a top maritime
official of causing the massive oil spill. The Greek captain (78) of
the Prestige was sentenced to nine months in prison for resisting
attempts to tow the wreck away from shore before it spilled its
(AP, 11/19/02)(WSJ, 12/11/02, p.A1)(AP,
2002 Dec 21, In Spain Jose
Hierro (80), a poet who won the Spanish-speaking world's highest
literary award while writing in a Madrid coffee shop, died.
2002 Dec 22, In Spain tens of
thousands of people marched in silence through the coastal city of
Bilbao to demand the dissolution of the armed Basque separatist
2002 Spain planed to abolish
the draft by the end of this year and to reduce its military to
(SFEC, 10/31/99, p.A28)
2002 The Web site Hoopshype.com
was started by 3 young men from Spain. By 2008 the site was
attracting half a million unique visitors a month.
(WSJ, 3/21/08, p.W1)
2003 Jan 2, A motorized rubber
boat carrying 41 illegal immigrants sank off the southern coast of
Spain, and six passengers drowned.
2003 Jan 3, Jose Maria
Gironella (85), Spanish author, died. His work included "The
Cypresses Believe in God," a trilogy based on the 1936-1939 Civil
War, for which he won the 1953 National Literary prize.
(SFC, 2/10/03, p.B5)
2003 Jan 16, The European
Union's Court of Justice ordered Spain and Italy to drop national
rules on what constitutes chocolate, saying they can no longer bar
British and Irish confections made with vegetable fats instead of
2003 Jan 17, France and Spain
opened the new 5.3-mile Somport tunnel through the western Pyrenees
2003 Jan 24, In Spain police
arrested 16 suspected al-Qaida terrorists.
2003 Feb 20, In Spain
police shut down the daily Egunkaria, a Basque-language newspaper,
and arrested its editor-in-chief and 10 other executives on
suspicion of aiding the armed separatist group ETA.
2003 Feb 21, Spain’s PM
Jose Maria Aznar arrived in Texas for a meeting with Pres. Bush.
(WSJ, 2/21/03, p.A8)
2003 Feb 22, Pres. Bush told
Spain’s PM Aznar that nations like Mexico, Angola, Chile and
Cameroon must know that the security of the United States is at
stake. Bush threatened nations with retaliation if they did not vote
for a UN resolution backing the Iraq war. A transcript of a meeting
on this day, one month before the US-led invasion of Iraq, was
published in the El Pais daily in 2007.
2003 Mar, Spain’s Supreme
Court outlawed the radical Batasuna party linked to ETA.
2003 Apr 3, In Spain a female
doctor described as mentally unbalanced stabbed several people at a
Madrid hospital, killing a colleague and a patient and wounding six
2003 Apr 8, In Iraq 2 cameramen
and one other journalist were killed and at least 3 others wounded
when an American tank hit the Hotel Palestine where they were
staying. An Al-Jazeera journalist was killed by US fire. In 2005 a
Spanish judge issued an arrest warrant for the 3-member US tank
crew, for the death of Jose Couso, who worked for the Spanish
television network Telecinco. Khalid Ibrahim Sa'id, Iraqi physicist,
was killed in Baghdad by a US tank crew as he rode in a car to check
on his home. British forces began establishing the first post-war
administration, putting a local sheik into power in the southern
city of Basra. Looting erupted shortly after their troops took
control of the city. A US warplane was shot down near Baghdad. US
forces seized Rasheed military airport.
(AP, 4/8/03)(AP, 4/9/03)(SFC, 4/9/03, p.A1)(AP,
10/19/05)(SSFC, 11/9/03, p.A14)(SSFC, 5/4/03, p.C3)(SSFC, 3/6/11,
2003 May 3, Pope John Paul II
began a whirlwind visit to Madrid, Spain.
2003 May 4, In Spain Pope John
Paul II proclaimed five new saints and urged Spaniards to emulate
them. They included: Pedro Poveda, a priest killed in 1936; Angela
de la Cruz, who founded the Sisters of the Company of the Cross;
Genoveva Torres, who founded the Sisters of the Sacred Heart and of
the Holy Angels; Maravillas de Jesus, who founded convents for the
Order of Barefoot Carmelites, and Jose Maria Rubio, a Jesuit priest.
2003 May 9, Spain's highest
court barred nearly 1,500 Basque nationalists from running in
municipal elections, calling them camouflaged members of the
outlawed party Batasuna.
2003 May 25, In Spain PM Jose
Maria Aznar's party held its ground in city and regional elections.
2003 May 26, An airplane
carrying Spanish peacekeepers crashed into a mountain in
northeastern Turkey while making its third attempt to land in thick
fog. All 74 people aboard were killed. The Yak-42 was chartered from
a Ukrainian company.
(AP, 5/26/03)(WSJ, 5/27/03, p.A1)
2003 May 30, In northern Spain
ETA committed its final fatal attack. A car bomb, placed by Basque
separatists, killed two police officers in Sanguesa in northern
(AP, 5/30/03)(AP, 3/22/06)
2003 Jun 3, In Spain a head-on
train collision near Chinchilla in Albacete province left at least
11 people dead and another 16 missing.
2003 Jun 8, In Barcelona,
Spain, more than 7,000 people gathered at daybreak and shed their
clothes to take part in artist Spencer Tunick's largest work yet, an
installation featuring a sea of nude bodies covering a central
2003 Jun, Moroccan authorities
warned Spain that Jamal Zougan, a radical Islamist with suspected
links to terrorists, had returned to Madrid.
(WSJ, 3/19/04, p.A11)
2003 Jul 10, Spain's Pres.
Aznar began a visit to 3 US states, California, New Mexico and
Texas, to promote trade and cultural connections.
(SFC, 7/11/03, p.A1)
2003 Jul 10, Grenada, Spain,
unveiled its first mosque since 1492 when the Moors were expelled.
2003 Jul 11, Spain, a leading
U.S. ally during the war to oust Saddam Hussein, agreed to send
1,300 soldiers to Iraq.
2003 Jul 25, In Spain 2 top
members of the outlawed Basque separatist group ETA were sentenced
to 790 years in prison for a 1987 bombing that killed 21 people and
2003 Oct 10, Spain's new
Madrid-Leida bullet train made its maiden journey. The train had an
average speed of 108 mph, with a peak of 124 mph. This was slower
than the intended average speed of 186 mph with peaks of 217 mph.
2003 Oct 12, In northern Spain
2 bombs exploded in a parking lot, destroying 11 freight trucks. No
one was injured in the blast blamed on the armed Basque separatist
2003 Oct 18, Manuel Vazquez
Montalban (64), one of Spain's best-known authors and the creator of
the Barcelona-based detective Pepe Carvalho, died.
2003 Oct 26, In Spain
conservatives regained control of Madrid's regional legislature in
an election giving PM Aznar's party momentum going into next year's
2003 Oct 28, Joan Perucho (82),
judge, novelist and art critic, died in Barcelona.
(SFC, 10/31/03, p.A25)
2003 Nov 3, Spanish authorities
closed the border with the British colony of Gibraltar before the
arrival of a virus-stricken cruise ship carrying some 2,000
passengers. More than 400 passengers on the ship fell ill with a
norovirus after the ship left Southampton, England, for a
Mediterranean voyage on Oct. 20.
2003 Nov 16, Catalans chose
among parties all pledging to seek greater autonomy or independence
from Spain in elections that will give the wealthy region a new
leader for the first time in almost a quarter century.
2003 Nov 29, In Iraq US
senators Hillary Rodham Clinton and Jack Reed met with local
officials in the oil-rich northern city of Kirkuk. Attackers in
Mahmudiyah killed 7 members of a Spanish intelligence team as it
returned from a mission. In northern Iraq gunmen ambushed and
murdered two Japanese diplomats and their Iraqi driver.
(AP, 11/29/03)(SSFC, 11/30/03, p.A1)(AP,
2003 Dec 9, French police
arrested Gorka Palacios Alday, the alleged military leader of the
banned Basque separatist group ETA, along with three accomplices.
2003 Dec 20, Spain's PM Jose
Maria Aznar paid a surprise visit to Spanish troops in Iraq.
2003 Dec 22, The world's
richest lottery spread $2.2 billion in Christmas cheer throughout
Spain, including to a village whose name means luck.
2003 Dec 29, Jaime de
Pinies, a longtime Spanish diplomat who served as president of the
United Nations General Assembly (1985), died in Madrid.
2003 In Spain Jesus Gil y Gil
(1933-2004), developer and football club owner, was sentenced to 3½
years plus a fine of some $16m for siphoning off Atletico funds and
fraud. Gil was mayor of Marbella on the Costa del Sol. Extensive
corruption in the town was unveiled in 2006.
(Econ, 8/23/03, p.40)(Econ, 4/8/06, p.52)
2004 Jan 14, In Spain Mohammed
Kamal Mustafa, imam of the southern town of Fuengirola, was given a
suspended sentence of to 15 months in prison. Spanish women's
associations hailed the conviction of the Islamic cleric who advised
Muslims how to beat their wives.
2004 Jan 16, Kepa Junkera,
button accordionist, performed his rendition of Basque Trikitixa
music at Stanford, Ca.
(SFC, 1/13/04, p.D1)
2004 Feb 18, The armed Basque
separatist group ETA unilaterally declared a cease-fire for the
northeastern region of Catalonia, but the move was immediately
criticized by Spain's prime minister and politicians who refuse to
negotiate with the militant group.
2004 Feb 29, Spain averted a
bombing by the Basque separatist group ETA after the Civil Guard
stopped a small truck and found about 1,100 pounds of bomb-making
2004 Mar 11, In Madrid, Spain,
a series of 10 bombs hidden in backpacks exploded in quick
succession at 3 stations, blowing apart four commuter trains. 191
people were killed and over 1,450 wounded. Spanish leaders were
quick to accuse Basque terrorists but a shadowy group claimed
responsibility in the name of al-Qaeda. On October 31, 2007, 3 lead
defendants were convicted of murder. Four other top suspects were
acquitted of murder but convicted of lesser charges. In all 21 of
the 28 defendants were convicted. On July 17, 2008, a Spanish court
cleared four of the 21 people charged for crimes related to the
train bombings. In 2009 7 people were indicted for helping the
(WSJ, 3/12/04, p.A1)(AP, 3/13/04)(SFC, 3/13/04,
p.A1)(SFC, 3/19/04, p.A3)(AP, 3/23/08)(AP, 10/31/07)(Reuters,
2004 Mar 14, Elections in Spain
returned the Socialists to power. Mariano Rajoy (48) of the ruling
conservative Popular Party was the prime minister's hand-picked
candidate to succeed him. Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero of the
Socialist Party hoped to end eight years of conservative government
after promising to pull Spanish troops out of Iraq and address
unaffordable housing and job insecurity at home. PM Jose Maria
Aznar's conservatives became the first government that had backed
Washington in Iraq to be voted from office. Zapatero led the
Socialists to victory.
(AP, 3/15/04)(Econ, 3/20/04, p.49)
2004 Mar 15, Jose Luis
Rodriguez Zapatero, the leader of Spain's victorious Socialists,
said he will withdraw his nation's support for the U.S.-led
occupation of Iraq.
2004 Mar 16, Spanish police
identified five additional Moroccan suspects they think took part in
last week's train bombing that killed 190 and injured 1,647 others.
(AP, 3/16/04)(AP, 3/23/04)
2004 Mar 20, The Economist
reported that a Goldman Sachs study found consumers in Australia and
Spain to be the most vulnerable, of 19 countries, to higher interest
rates or recession.
(Econ, 3/20/04, p.85)
2004 Mar 21, Spain's incoming
Socialist government rejected an offer for dialogue from the Basque
separatist group ETA.
2004 Apr 2, A Spanish railroad
inspector found a 26-pound bomb hidden in a bag on a busy high-speed
line. Police said the device may contain the same dynamite used in
last month's Madrid train bombings.
2004 Apr 3, In Spain Sarhane
Abdelmajid Fakhet (35), a Tunisian national and the alleged
ringleader of last month's train bombings in Madrid, was among 5
suspects who blew themselves up as police raided their apartment.
(AP, 4/4/04)(SFC, 4/5/04, p.A3)(WSJ, 4/6/04,
2004 Apr 6, The Barcelona city
council passed a resolution condemning bullfighting and declaring
the city Spain's first to come out against the centuries-old sport.
2004 Apr 16, Jose Luis
Rodriguez Zapatero, Spain's young and largely untested Socialist
leader, won parliamentary Friday as prime minister.
2004 Apr 18, Rodriguez
Zapatero, Spain's new PM, ordered the withdrawal of 1,300 Spanish
troops from Iraq.
(SFC, 4/19/04, p.A1)
2004 Apr 22, Spain has agreed
to a U.S. request to leave its intelligence agents in Iraq and not
withdraw them along with its 1,300 troops.
2004 Apr 28, A Spanish judge
indicted Amer Azizi, a Moroccan fugitive, on charges of helping to
plan the Sept. 11 hijackings.
2004 May 6, The US FBI, using
fingerprint evidence, arrested Oregon lawyer Brandon Mayfield as
part of the investigation into the Madrid, Spain, train bombings.
The bureau later said Mayfield's arrest had been a mistake, and
apologized. In 2006 the US government agreed to pay Mayfield $2
million to settle a lawsuit.
(AP, 5/6/05)(SFC, 11/30/06, p.A7)
2004 May 22, Spain's Crown
Prince Felipe married former TV anchorwoman Letizia Ortiz, the first
commoner in line to be queen in Spanish history.
2004 Jul 5, Animal rights
activists protested in Pamplona, Spain, on the eve of the start of
the famous running of the bulls 'San Fermin' festival.
2004 Jul 20, EU lawmakers
elected a pro-European from Spain to be its next president as the
expanded European Parliament met for the first time. The 732-member
assembly chose Josep Borrell, a relatively unknown Spanish
Socialist, to its top job.
2004 Jul 25, A Spanish
newspaper reported that Morocco had warned Spain earlier this month
that it lost track of 400 Moroccan Islamist militants who trained in
al Qaeda camps in Afghanistan, Bosnia or Chechnya.
2004 Jul 26, Close to 5,000
'cybernauts' gathered for a weeklong computer party in Spain’s
southeastern city of Valencia.
2004 Jul 26, Banco Santander
Central Hispano of Spain, with the help of Royal Bank of Scotland,
announced a deal to acquire Abbey National Bank in the UK. The $16
billion deal created the tenth largest bank in the world.
2004 Sep 25, A film about Iraqi
children victims of war "Turtles can fly" directed by Iranian Bahman
Ghobadi won the Concha de Oro (Golden Shell) at the prestigious San
Sebastian film festival.
2004 Oct 1, Spain's Socialist
government approved a controversial law that would give gay and
lesbian couples the same right to marry, divorce and adopt children
2004 Oct 3, Two of Spain's most
wanted alleged terrorists and at least 16 other suspected members of
the armed Basque separatist group ETA were captured in a vast
French-Spanish police operation. Mikel “Antza” Albizu Iriarte was
arrested with his girlfriend Soledad Genetxea.
(AP, 10/3/04)(Econ, 10/9/04, p.48)
2004 Oct 6, In Spain a judge
ordered the top banker to stand trial on charges of tax fraud.
2004 Nov 16, Spanish police
arrested 17 suspected members of the armed Basque separatist group
ETA in a series of pre-dawn raids in northern Spain.
2004 Dec 6, In Spain bombs
injured at least 18 people in 7 cities following warnings from
callers claiming to represent the Basque separatist group ETA.
(WSJ, 12/7/04, p.A1)
2004 Dec 28, The Spanish
government has reached an agreement with unions and employers to
raise the minimum monthly wage by 4.5 percent to euro512.90 ($699)
on Jan. 1.
2004 Dec 30, Spain approved new
guidelines on immigration, including a partial amnesty aimed at
giving papers to some of the 800,000 illegal immigrants estimated to
be living in the country.
2004 Dec 31, Spain's socialist
government approved a bill to legalize same-sex marriages.
2004-2006 In Spain Duke Inaki Urdangarin, the Duke
of Palma de Mallorca and husband of Princess Cristina, headed the
nonprofit Noos Institute. In 2011 it was revealed that the Duke and
business partner Diego Torres used the institute to organize events
related to sports and tourism diverting millions of euros in public
and private funds into their own companies.
(SFC, 12/13/11, p.A7)
2005 Jan 1, Spain was forecast
for 3% annual GDP growth with a population at 41.3 million and GDP
per head at $26,660.
(Econ, 1/8/05, p.89)
2005 Jan 13, In Spain an
explosion killed seven workers at a warehouse in the northern city
of Burgos. A gas leak was suspected.
2005 Jan 16, The armed Basque
separatist group ETA threw its weight behind an initiative by its
political wing to open dialogue with the Spanish government on
solving the Basque problem.
2005 Feb 6, The bodies of 18
victims of carbon monoxide poisoning from a faulty gas heater were
found at a cottage near the village of Todolella in Spain’s
(WSJ, 2/7/05, p.A1)
2005 Feb 7, Spain launched an
immigrant amnesty program. As many as 800,00 new residency permits
(WSJ, 2/7/05, p.A16)
2005 Feb 9, In Spain a car bomb
exploded in a business park on the outskirts of Madrid just after
the morning rush hour, injuring 43 people. Government officials
blamed the Basque separatist group ETA.
2005 Feb 13, Firefighters shot
jets of water on one of Madrid’s tallest office buildings for a 2nd
day, fighting to control a fiery orange blaze that began the night
before and threatened to collapse the 32-story skyscraper.
2005 Feb 17, Spanish police
arrested two suspected members of the armed Basque separatist group
ETA in Valencia, seizing explosives that they planned to use for
2005 Feb 20, Spanish voters
endorsed the EU constitution in a nonbinding referendum.
(SFC, 2/21/05, p.A3)
2005 Mar 8, In Madrid, Spain, a
summit on terrorism opened.
2005 Mar 9, Spanish serial
killer Alfredo Galan, nicknamed the "playing card assassin" because
he left a card at the scene of each murder, received jail sentences
totaling 142 years.
2005 Mar 12, Spanish police
said they had cracked a money-laundering operation worth up to 250
million euros ($335.8 million) which might have links to YUKOS, but
had not specified what those links might be.
2005 Apr 10, Spanish police
seized a cache of explosives in an operation against the armed
Basque separatist group ETA one week before a Basque regional
2005 Apr 17, In northern Spain
the Basque region's ruling nationalists faced a test of their drive
to secure more autonomy as elections got under way. The Basque
Nationalist Party (PNV), led by Juan Jose Ibarretxe, lost 4 seats.
(AP, 4/17/05)(Econ, 4/23/05, p.51)
2005 Apr 19, A Spanish court
convicted Adolfo Scilingo (58), a former Argentine naval officer, of
crimes against humanity for throwing 30 naked and drugged prisoners
from planes during his country's "dirty war" more than two decades
ago. It sentenced him to 640 years in prison. During the trial,
Scilingo insisted he fabricated the taped testimony to trigger an
investigation into Argentina's "dirty war."
2005 May 17, Spain’s Parliament
approved a resolution authorizing a “negotiated end” to almost 40
years of separatist violence. Parliament backed Socialist PM Jose
Luis Rodriguez Zapatero's offer of talks with ETA if its groups end
(WSJ, 5/18/05, p.A12)(AP, 3/22/06)
2005 May 17, The captain of the
Greenpeace boat, "The Rainbow Warrior," was sentenced to six months
in prison for disobedience during a protest against the war in Iraq
in 2003. The case stemmed from the detention of five men on March
14, 2003, for staging a protest aboard the boat captained by Daniel
Rizzotti, an Argentine citizen, near the U.S.-Spanish Rota naval
base in southern Spain.
2005 May 18, Spain's Senate
ratified the new European Union constitution, becoming the ninth
country to approve the landmark document.
2005 May 25, A powerful car
bomb exploded in Madrid after a warning call from the armed Basque
separatist group ETA. 18 people were injured.
2005 Jun 8, A 2-day conference
on racism sponsored by the Organization for Security and Cooperation
in Europe (OSCE) opened in Cordoba, Spain.
2005 Jun 15, Spanish
authorities said police had arrested 16 Islamic terror suspects in
raids in several cities, including 11 men accused of having ties to
Abu-Musab al-Zarqawi's group al-Qaida in Iraq and recruiting people
for suicide attacks there.
2005 Jun 18, In Spain ETA
announced it will no longer kill elected members of political
2005 Jun 19, Voters in Spain's
northwest Galicia region were deciding whether to extend the 15-year
rule of Manuel Fraga (82), the last surviving politician of Gen.
Francisco Franco's regime. Fraga had served as Interior Minister
from 1975-1976, when police still occasionally fired on
(AP, 6/19/05)(Econ, 4/17/10, p.57)
2005 Jun 28, In Madrid a
Tibetan group presented a criminal case against top Chinese
officials for genocide and crimes against humanity, seeking to take
advantage of Spain's laws on international human rights crimes.
2005 Jun 30, Spain’s Parliament
voted 187-147 to legalize gay marriages, defying conservatives and
clergy making Spain the 3rd country to allow same-sex unions
(AP, 6/30/05)(WSJ, 7/1/05, p.A1)
2005 Jul 17, In central Spain
11 firefighters trying to extinguish a forest fire sparked by a
smoldering barbeque were killed.
2005 Jul 18, The United States
extradited a Moroccan held at Guantanamo Bay who was indicted in
Spain for his alleged links to an al-Qaida cell.
2005 Jul 22, Spain banned
lighting fires in open spaces nationwide until November. This was
Spain’s worst drought since 1947. Spaniards will no longer allowed
to smoke as they take a Sunday stroll in the woods, under new
government rules aimed at curbing the risk of fires such as a recent
one in which 11 firefighters died in Guadalajara.
(Reuters, 7/25/05)(Econ, 7/23/05, p.47)
2005 Jul 27, France Telecom
bought an 80% stake in Amena, Spain’s 3rd largest mobile telephone
(Econ, 7/30/05, p.54)
2005 Aug 16, Two helicopters
carrying NATO-led forces to prepare for next month's elections
crashed in the desert in western Afghanistan, killing at least 17
2005 Aug 31, In Spain tens of
thousands of people armed with 100 tons of plum tomatoes took part
in the "Tomatina," joyously splattering each other in the town of
2005 Aug, A report, only made
public in 2008, marked confidential and bearing the official seal of
Spain's Defense Ministry charged that Pakistan's spy service was
helping arm Taliban insurgents for assassination plots against the
2005 Sep 26, Spain’s high court
convicted 18 Muslim immigrants of terrorism-related charges. Imad
Eddin Barakat Yarkas, a suspected al-Qaida cell leader, was
sentenced to 27 years in prison. He was convicted of conspiring to
commit murder in connection with the Sept. 11 attacks in the US,
concluding Europe's biggest trial of alleged members of the
terrorist group. Among those convicted was an Al-Jazeera TV
correspondent, who was sentenced to 7 years.
(Reuters, 9/26/05)(SFC, 9/27/05, p.A3)
2005 Sep 29, Hundreds of
African migrants charged a razor-wire border fence at a Spanish
enclave in northern Morocco before dawn, and five people were killed
and 50 injured, prompting Spain to send troops to secure the
2005 Sep 30, Catalonia's
parliament approved a new charter that called the wealthy region in
northeastern Spain "a nation," wording that has some worried that
the region is heading toward a break with Spain.
2005 Sep, The Economist
Intelligence Unit ranked IESE Business School, an arm of Spain’s
Univ. of Navarre, as the world’s top business school.
(Econ, 9/24/05, p.81)
2005 Oct 3, More than 300
Africans tore through a razor-wire fence separating Morocco from the
Spanish enclave of Melilla, clashing with police in the latest wave
of undocumented immigrants seeking a foothold in Europe.
2005 Oct 4, Spain said it will
build a third high-security fence between its Melilla enclave and
Morocco after undocumented immigrants repeatedly stormed two
2005 Oct 5, Some 500 African
immigrants defied increased security and tried to surge across
razor-wire fences separating Morocco and the Spanish enclave of
Melilla, the 5th such rush in a week. The assault in a week prompted
Spain to announce plans to expel the illegal migrants.
2005 Oct 13, Spanish
authorities said police have seized 3.5 tons of cocaine in a fishing
boat bound for Spain from Venezuela after tip-offs from U.S.
2005 Oct 13, At the
Ibero-American Summit in Spain, foreign ministers from Latin
America, Spain and Portugal backed Cuba on in two of its battles
against the US, calling for an end to the US embargo and the
expulsion from the U.S. of a Cuban militant wanted for a 1976 plane
2005 Oct 14, At the
Ibero-American Summit in Spain UN Sec.-General Kofi Annan called for
greater progress in trade talks on farming.
2005 Oct 15, In northeastern
Spanish at least 5 north African men were killed, four were injured
and one was believed still trapped under rubble after a three-storey
17th century building collapsed in the town of Piera.
2005 Oct 19, A court officials
said a Spanish judge has issued an international arrest warrant for
three US soldiers whose tank fired on a Baghdad hotel during the
Iraq war, killing a Spanish journalist and one other. Jose Couso,
who worked for the Spanish television network Telecinco, died April
8, 2003, after a US army tank crew fired a shell on Hotel Palestine.
Spanish courts authorized criminal charges against 3 American
soldiers, but Spanish prosecutors, under US pressure, moved to
scuttle the case.
(AP, 10/19/05)(SSFC, 3/6/11, p.F6)
2005 Oct 22, In Spain the
Basque country's ruling party called for new initiatives to end
violence by ETA guerrillas in Spain and break a political deadlock
over the region's status.
2005 Oct 23, Stella Obasanjo
(59), the wife of Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, died after
undergoing liposuction surgery in Spain. In 2009 A court in Malaga
convicted plastic surgeon Antonio Mena Molina of negligent homicide.
He was given a suspended sentence of a year in jail, barred from
practicing medicine for three years, and ordered to pay euro120,000
($175,000) in damages to the woman's son.
(AP, 10/23/05)(AP, 9/22/09)
2005 Oct 31, The Spanish
telecommunications company Telefonica announced an agreed $31.5
billion takeover of mobile-phone operator O2, to be paid in cash.
(Econ, 11/5/05, p.65)
2005 Oct, Spain’s ENCE planned
to start a cellulose plant on the Uruguay River bordering Argentina.
(Econ, 10/8/05, p.47)
2005 Nov 4, Spain's Supreme
Court sentenced pro-Basque independence leader Arnaldo Otegi to a
year in prison for slandering King Juan Carlos by saying he was in
charge of torturers.
2005 Nov 7, A section of a
bridge under construction in southern Spain collapsed on workers,
killing at least five of them.
2005 Nov 13, China's President
Hu Jintao has arrived in Spain for the final leg of a European trip
dominated by trade, but was again set to be dogged by protests over
his country's human rights record.
2005 Nov 14, Spanish court
officials said the National Court has received a prosecutor's report
on allegations that the CIA used an airport on the Spanish island of
Mallorca for a program of covert transfers of terror suspects. The
114-page report was submitted in July.
2005 Nov 23, Spanish police
arrested 11 people suspected of financing and giving logistical
support to an Islamic extremist group linked to al-Qaida.
2005 Nov 28, Spain agreed to
sell 12 military planes and eight patrol boats to Venezuela in a $2
billion deal that the United States has threatened to block.
2005 Nov 29, Spain announced it
plans to sell planes and helicopters to Colombia.
(WSJ, 11/30/05, p.A1)
2005 Nov, In western Spain
officers of Seprona, the environmental unit of the paramilitary
Civil Guard, arrested hunters skinning a Bengal tiger. Agents also
found another tiger and lion in cages waiting their turn to be
hunted. In the 1st half of the year officers confiscated 678
illegally imported live animals.
(WSJ, 4/12/06, p.A1)
2005 Dec 7, Spanish authorities
arrested former Gen. Ante Gotovina, the top Croatian war crimes
suspect, after four years on the run. He was captured in the Canary
Islands when special police agents surprised him as he dined in a
luxury beach hotel.
2005 Dec 9, Spanish police
arrested at least 7 people over the last 24 hours suspected of
financing and giving logistical support to an Islamic extremist
group with links to al-Qaida.
2005 Dec 19, Spanish police
arrested 15 people on suspicion of recruiting and indoctrinating
fighters for Iraq's insurgency.
2005 Dec 22, A lottery known as
"El Gordo" — the Fat One — sprinkled more than $2.4 billion in
Christmas cheer around Spain, with this Catalan town known for its
churches and convents blessed with a quarter of the windfall.
2005 Dec 27, In Spain a new law
that took effect ordering government ministries to close no later
than 6 p.m., part of a broad package of measures that are geared to
help Spaniards juggle their jobs and families.
2005 Spain unveiled a Renewable
2005 Spain adopted the
so-called “Beckham law,” a preferential tax status to foreigners.
(Econ, 9/24/11, p.85)
2005 Housing starts in Spain
reached 715,000 for the year.
(Econ, 9/16/06, p.61)
2005 Some 650,000 people
arrived in Spain pushing the total population to over 44 million.
Some 700,000 illegal immigrants were granted amnesty.
(Econ, 10/14/06, p.59)
2006 Jan 1, Spanish smokers
faced a wrenching change New Year's Day as a nationwide ban on
tobacco in the workplace came into force in a country known for its
2006 Jan 10, Spanish police
arrested 20 people, mostly Moroccans, linked to Islamic terrorism
and violence in Iraq in raids across Spain.
2006 Jan 12, Spanish police
detained Omar Nakcha (23), a Moroccan whom they suspect of being the
leader of two extremist groups recruiting volunteers to fight in
2006 Feb 9, Spanish police in
Madrid arrested Ricardo Taddei (63), a former Argentine police
officer, wanted in connection with kidnappings and torture during
his country's "dirty war" against leftist dissidents.
2006 Feb 13, In Spain survivors
and relatives of people killed in terrorist attacks worldwide
gathered to share stories of their common tragedy, discuss ways to
fight the scourge and hear what governments plan to do to make their
2006 Feb 22, Spanish PM Jose
Luis Rodriguez Zapatero expressed reticence about a takeover bid for
leading domestic electricity group Endesa by E.ON of Germany, saying
national interest was paramount. In July Spain’s energy regulator
(CNE) imposed 19 conditions on the bid for Endesa. On Aug 25 EU
regulators warned that government restrictions on E.ON’s bid were
(AP, 2/22/06)(Econ, 9/2/06, p.58)
2006 Mar 19, In Seville, Spain,
Muslim and Jewish leaders met in a rare face-to-face forum and
appealed to their faithful not to view each other as enemies and
keep religion from being hijacked by extremists. The 4-day meeting,
called the Second World Congress of Imams and Rabbis for Peace, was
sponsored by Hommes de Parole, a peace foundation based in Paris.
2006 Mar 13, A Spanish judge
indicted 32 people for allegedly plotting to drive a truck packed
with explosives into a courthouse that has been the hub for
anti-terrorism investigations. Authorities suspected that Mohamed
Achraf was planning to ram a truck loaded with 1,100 pounds of
explosives into the court in downtown Madrid.
2006 Mar 22, The Basque
separatist group ETA announced a permanent cease-fire, ending a
decades-long campaign of violence and closing the door on one of
Western Europe's last active armed separatist movements.
2006 Mar 30, Spain's lower
house of parliament approved a divisive proposal to grant greater
autonomy to Catalonia and boost the wealthy region's tax collecting
and judicial powers.
2006 Mar, In Spain a dozen
councilors from the southern resort of Marbella were arrested for
graft related to construction projects.
(Econ, 9/16/06, p.61)
2006 Apr 1, Tens of thousands
of people gathered at a rally in the northern city of Bilbao to call
for greater Basque self-determination and negotiations between the
Spanish government and separatists.
2006 Apr 11, In Spain a judge
handed down the first indictments in the Madrid train bombings,
charging 29 people with murder, terrorism or other crimes after a
2006 Apr 16, In Spain a bus
carrying Boy Scouts overturned on a northern highway, killing at
least four people, including three minors.
2006 May 10, In Madrid, Spain,
hundreds of thousands of small investors who fell victim to a stamp
scam demonstrated to try to recover lost savings potentially
amounting to billions of euros. A day earlier police arrested nine
directors of two philately organizations, Afinsa and Forum
2006 May 12, Spain's Banco
Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (BBVA) agreed to the French bank BNP
Paribas' purchase of its 14.75-percent stake in Italy's Banca
Nazionale del Lavoro (BNL), saying it will reap 567 million euros
(731 million dollars) in capital gains from the sale.
2006 May 13, Spanish police and
rescue vessels intercepted six boats carrying over 460 sub-Saharan
illegal migrants off the coast of the Canary Island of Tenerife.
Officials said as many as 1,000 immigrants may have drowned on this
route over just the last 6 months.
(AP, 5/13/06)(Econ, 5/13/06, p.61)
2006 May 14, The armed Basque
group ETA stated publicly for the first time since a ceasefire
declaration in March that it still demands self-determination for
the Basque Country.
2006 Jun 1, Spain's Supreme
Court acquitted the only person convicted of involvement in the
September 11 attacks in a trial last year of suspected Al Qaeda
members. Imad Eddin Barakat Yarkas, known as Abu Dahdah, had been
convicted of conspiracy to commit terrorist murder and sentenced to
27 years in jail. He will, however, continue to serve a 12 year
sentence for leading a terrorist group.
2006 Jun 1, In Spain Rocio
Jurado (61), hailed as the country’s greatest singer, died of
cancer. Her recordings included 5 platinum and 30 gold records.
(SFC, 6/2/06, p.B9)
2006 Jun 6, The Spanish
interior ministry said that 67 suspects had been arrested for
accessing child porn on the Internet over the past five days. The
international police operation arrested 38 in France, 10 in Spain, 9
in Slovakia, 7 in Belgium and 3 in the Netherlands.
2006 Jun 6, Britain’s BAA,
owners of Heathrow, Stansted and Gatwick airports, accepted an $18.8
billion bid from Spain’s Grupo Ferrovial, led by Rafael del Pino.
(Econ, 6/10/06, p.55)(Econ, 7/7/07, p.67)
2006 Jun 10, Tens of thousands
of Spaniards marched in Madrid to demand the government not hold
talks with Basque separatists.
2006 Jun 18, Catalans went to
the polls in a referendum on giving their region increased autonomy,
in a crucial test for Spanish PM Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero as he
seeks to rally support for peace talks with Basque separatists.
Catalan voters overwhelmingly approved a blueprint that some fear
could leave Spain's government cash-strapped and powerless.
2006 Jun 20, In Spain and
France 12 people, including one of the founders of the Basque
separatists ETA, were arrested in pre-dawn raids in a crackdown on
illegal financing of the armed group.
2006 Jun 29, Spain officially
announced the start of peace negotiations with the Basque separatist
group ETA after formally informing parliament, and PM Zapatero
warned that talks to end decades of bloodshed would be long and
2006 Jul 3, A subway train
derailed in the eastern Spanish city of Valencia, killing 43 people.
"Initial investigations show it was an accident," said Vicente
Rambla, spokesman for the Valencia regional government.
2006 Jul 6, A delegate from
Spain's ruling party met with the leader of an outlawed Basque
separatist group in historic talks hailed by both sides as a
possible step toward peace.
2006 Jul 7, A Spanish judge
charged two former Guatemalan dictators with genocide and issued
international warrants for their arrest. National Court Judge
Santiago Pedraz issued warrants on charges of genocide, torture,
terrorism and illegal detention against Gen. Efrain Rios Montt, Gen.
Oscar Humberto Mejia Victores and six other men.
2006 Jul 7, Spain’s Agriculture
Ministry said it has recorded its first case of H5N1 bird flu. The
deadly strain was found in a water fowl in a marsh area outside the
northern city of Vitoria.
2006 Jul 8, Pope Benedict XVI
stressed family values during a visit to Spain, where church
influence has waned and the government has angered the Vatican with
its liberal take on issues including gay marriage.
2006 Jul 20, Bio Fuel Systems,
a Spanish company, claimed to have developed a method of breeding
plankton and turning the marine plants into oil, providing a
potentially inexhaustible source of clean fuel.
2006 Jul 27, Police found the
bodies of four Africans on a boat packed with 26 other would-be
immigrants that was intercepted off Spain's Canary Islands.
2006 Jul 28, The Spanish
government approved a divisive bill allowing reparations for victims
of the Spanish Civil War and the ensuing dictatorship of Gen.
2006 Jul, Spain’s inflation
stood close to 4%, almost 1.5 points above the average for the euro
area. Spain’s current account deficit was among the highest in the
world heading for over 9% of GDP. Housing was estimated to be
overvalued by as much as 25-30%.
(Econ, 7/29/06, p.49)
2006 Jul, In Spain employees of
the airline Iberia blocked Barcelona runways over a new baggage
check arrangement. In 2011 Spain’s Supreme Court confirmed 2-year
prison sentences for 23 employees whose actions affected some 600
flights leaving 100,000 passengers stranded.
(SFC, 1/29/11, p.A2)
2006 Aug 6, Crews fought more
than 20 forest fires in northern Spain and stopped blazes from
advancing into two historic towns. The fires killed three people and
destroyed thousands of acres of woodland. Authorities said most of
the blazes were deliberately set.
(AP, 8/6/06)(AP, 8/7/06)
2006 Aug 12, Hundreds of
paratroopers joined the struggle to control scores of forest fires
in northwestern Spain. A total of 24 people have been arrested since
Aug. 1 on suspicion of deliberately starting many of the fires.
2006 Aug 21, In northern Spain
at least 6 people died in a train derailment.
2006 Aug 22, In Spain Grigory
Perelman (40), a reclusive Russian, won a Fields Medal, the math
world's highest honor, for solving a problem that has stumped some
of the discipline's greatest minds for a century, but he refused the
2006 Aug 27, Mauritania police
said the bodies of 15 people found washed ashore on the beaches of
Nouakchatt, Mauritania's capital, are believed to be those of
African migrants who were trying to reach Spain's Canary Islands by
boat. Spain's Interior Ministry said more than 18,300 people have
reached the Canary Islands so far this year, the highest total ever.
2006 Sep 1, Spain's Cabinet
approved sending 1,100 troops to the UN peacekeeping force in
Lebanon, calling it a "legitimate" mission to help maintain peace in
2006 Sep 1, In Spain
self-contained, nonsmoking areas with their own ventilation systems,
became requisite for larger restaurants and bars.
2006 Sep 15, Alberto Linero
(27) and Alberto Sanchez (24) both privates in the Spanish air
force, exchanged vows in a reception room at Seville's town hall, in
the first known wedding among same-sex members of the military since
Spain legalized gay marriage last year.
2006 Sep 18, Britain and Spain
reached a historic deal to resolve side issues stemming from their
300-year-old dispute over Gibraltar, but sidestepped the main one,
their claims to the Rock's sovereignty.
2006 Sep 23, Spain's Basque
separatist group ETA has said it will not give up its weapons until
independence for the Basque region is won, fuelling concerns over
the future of a six-month-old ceasefire.
2006 Sep, In Sesena, Spain, a
town of fewer than 10,000 40 km from Madrid, some 13,000 apartments
were under construction. Mayor Manuel Fuentes expected 40,000 new
(Econ, 9/16/06, p.61)
2006 Oct 9, Khaled al-Masri
(43), a Kuwaiti-born German citizen, testified in a Spanish court
that he was kidnapped on Dec 31, 2003, at the Serbia-Macedonia
border while on vacation, tortured by US intelligence agents for 23
days, then flown by the CIA to Afghanistan where he was imprisoned
and abused for five months. He was released in Albania in May 2004
after the CIA discovered they had the wrong person.
2006 Oct 14, In northwestern
Spain vandals freed over 15,000 minks from breeding farms.
(SFC, 10/16/06, p.A3)
2006 Oct 26, Spanish police
arrested Orlando Sabogal Zuluaga (40), a leading member of one of
Colombia's most feared drug-trafficking cartels, in a shopping
center on the outskirts of Madrid.
2006 Nov 4, Spanish police said
that 1.8 billion euros (2.3 billion dollars) had been frozen in bank
accounts as investigations continued into possible tax fraud.
2006 Nov 4, Swathes of Austria,
Belgium, Croatia, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, and the
Netherlands and went dark for up to an hour in the late evening as
cold Germans rushing to switch on heaters sucked up electricity from
Europe's interconnected networks.
2006 Nov 6, In Italy a Milan
court sentenced Rabei Ousmane Sayed Ahmed, the accused mastermind of
the March 2004 train bombings in Madrid, to 10 years in jail for
membership of a terrorist organization. A second Egyptian, Yahya
Mawad Mohamed Rajeh, was sentenced to five years in jail in the
2006 Nov 7, French authorities
handed over to Spain Jose Javier Arizcuren Ruiz, a former leading
member of the armed Basque separatist group ETA, who police blame
for killing at least 15 people and planning several major attacks.
Ruiz, also known as "Kantauri," was arrested in Paris in 1999 and
served time in a French prison on charges of being a member of an
2006 Nov 12, Spanish farmers
led a flock of hundreds of bleating sheep through downtown Madrid in
a protest urging the protection of ancient grazing routes threatened
by urban sprawl.
2006 Nov 16, Spain, France and
Italy unveiled a five-point Middle East peace initiative, calling
Israeli-Palestinian violence intolerable and saying that Europe must
take a lead role in ending the conflict.
2006 Nov 17, Italy turned over
Rabei Osman Sayed Ahmed (35) an Egyptian Muslim militant convicted
of terrorism to Spain, where he is charged as a key suspect in the
2004 Madrid terror bombing.
2006 Nov 22, Authorities in
Italy, Spain, the United States and several South American countries
arrested 76 people as part of a major drug crackdown in which a
restaurant linked to one of Colombia's most feared warlords was
2006 Dec 12, Hundreds of
Spanish police and security officials arrested at least 11 suspected
Islamic militants in pre-dawn raids in Ceuta, a tiny Spanish enclave
on Morocco's coast.
2006 Dec 22, Residents of
Almazan, a small town in rural Spain, won the top prize of 390
million euros in the world's richest lottery, known as El Gordo or
"the fat one".
2006 Dec 24, A new study was
published saying traces of cocaine can be found on 94% of banknotes
in Spain, a country that has one of the world's highest rates of
2006 Dec 30, A car bomb
exploded in a parking lot at Madrid's glittery new airport terminal,
and the government blamed the Basque separatist group ETA. 26 were
slightly injured. The bodies of two people from Ecuador were later
recovered. This signaled the apparent end of a nine-month ceasefire.
(AP, 12/31/06)(AP, 1/6/07)
2006 Dec 30, Maria del Carmen
Bousada (66) of Spain became the world's oldest mother after she
gave birth to twins in the northern city of Barcelona. She had
previously undergone in vitro fertilization in Los Angeles. Bousada
(69) died of cancer on July 11, 2009, leaving behind her twin
(AP, 12/30/06)(AP, 7/15/09)
2006 Javier Marias (b.1951),
Spanish novelist, authored “Written Lives,” a profile of his
literary favorites. The English translation was by Margaret Jull
(WSJ, 3/4/06, p.P8)
2006 Giles Tremlett authored
“Ghosts of Spain: Travels Through a Country's Hidden Past.”
(WSJ, 2/3/07, p.P13)
2006 Spain prepared to launch
production of solar energy from what will be Europe's largest
thermo-electric plant at Sanlucar La Mayor, near the southern city
2006 Italy was taken over by
Spain in GDP per head. This was made public in late 2007.
(Econ, 1/5/08, p.44)
2007 Jan 4, Police in the
Basque region said they had found a bomb in northern Spain, five
days after a Madrid car bombing, blamed on the separatist group ETA,
killed 2 people.
(AP, 1/4/07)(AP, 1/6/07)
2007 Jan 9, Armed Basque
separatist group ETA claimed responsibility for the bomb attack at
Madrid airport that killed 2 people last week but said its ceasefire
still held and it wanted peace.
2007 Jan 16, Spanish court
officials said Spain has issued an international arrest warrant for
three US soldiers after reopening a murder investigation into the
killing of Spanish television cameraman Jose Couso in Iraq on Apr
2007 Jan 31, Two Spanish men,
both charged with providing explosives for Islamist train bombings
in Madrid in 2004, were given jail sentences in a separate trial for
selling explosives in 2001. The court in Asturias said it jailed
former miner Jose Emilio Suarez-Trashorras and his brother-in-law,
Antonio Toro, for 10 and 11-1/2 years respectively on charges of
drugs and explosives trafficking.
2007 Feb 3, Tens of thousands
of people marched in Madrid to reject any negotiations with the
Basque separatist group ETA, whose car bombing in the capital a
month ago shattered a nascent peace process.
2007 Feb 5, A home-made bomb
ripped through a train station in Spain's Basque region. Police said
it appeared to have been the work of Basque independence street
gangs, rather than armed separatists ETA.
2007 Feb 7, The Spanish Civil
Guard said authorities have arrested 52 people in a major crackdown
on a suspected ring of antiquities looters from dozens of sites in
2007 Feb 16, BBVA, Spain's
number two bank, said it has reached an agreement to buy US bank
Compass Bancshares for around 9.6 billion US dollars (7.4 billion
euros) in the latest major foreign acquisition by a Spanish firm.
2007 Feb 24, In Spain thousands
of people waving red-and-yellow Spanish flags protested in Madrid
against a court ruling that shortened the prison sentence for one of
the Basque separatist group ETA's most notorious killers.
2007 Mar 1, In France, Germany
and Spain workers at Airbus revolted against massive cutbacks,
planning a strike next week in a warning to the company that its
recovery strategy is in for a long, tough haul.
2007 Mar 9, Thousands of people
across Spain took part in rallies called by the right wing
opposition to protest the Socialists government's decision to allow
a hunger-striking Basque separatist serve out his jail term under
2007 Mar 11, Spain unveiled a
towering monument to those killed three years ago in the bombings
that ripped apart rush-hour commuter trains, a glass oval containing
messages of condolence written in the aftermath of Europe's worst
Islamic terror attack.
2007 Mar 12, Authorities said
Spanish police have arrested Brian David Anderson (61), a Canadian
man suspected of helping finance Islamist terrorist activities. The
Interior Ministry said Anderson is thought to be linked to a New
York businessman, Abdul Tawala Ibn Ali Alishtari, 53, who was
charged last month with terrorism financing, material support of
terrorism and money laundering.
2007 Mar 15, Spain’s Parliament
passed a gender-equality bill aimed at getting more Spanish women
into elected office and corporate boardrooms, and more men heating
baby bottles and changing diapers.
2007 Mar 17, In Spain film
director Pedro Almodovar joined tens of thousands of people in a
march through Madrid to protest the war in Iraq and to demand the
closure of the US military prison at Guantanamo Bay.
2007 Mar 20, The Madrid
government said El Hierro, one of the smallest of Spain's Canary
Islands, is to receive 100 percent of its electricity supply from
renewable energy sources.
2007 Apr 24, Pakistani
President Pervez Musharraf arrived in Spain, part of a four-nation
tour of Europe, for talks expected to focus on Islamic radicalism
and NATO's mission in Afghanistan.
2007 Apr 25, Royal Bank of
Scotland, Fortis, a Belgian-Dutch lender and Santander of Spain
launched a blockbuster 72-billion-euro takeover battle for Dutch
group ABN Amro, outgunning by far an agreed offer by Barclays.
(AFP, 4/25/07)(Econ, 4/28/07, p.85)(Econ,
2007 Apr 27, A Spanish judge
indicted three US soldiers in the 2003 death of Jose Couso, a
Spanish journalist who was killed when their tank opened fire at a
hotel in Baghdad.
2007 May 6, Spain's Supreme
Court barred hundreds of Basque separatist candidates from running
in regional elections later this month because of links to an
outlawed party closely tied to armed group ETA.
2007 May 14, In Tunisia Sfax
port officials said the Tunisian coastguard had rescued 35 African
would-be immigrants who were trying to sail to Italy from the Libyan
coast. More than 1,000 people have landed on Spanish or Italian
territory since May 10.
2007 May 15, A Spanish
anesthesiologist with hepatitis C was sentenced to prison for
infecting 275 people with the virus by injecting them with morphine
from the same needles he used to feed his own addiction. Juan Maeso
(65) was sentenced to 1,933 years in prison. The most he can serve
under Spanish law is 20 years.
2007 May 27, Spain's rival
Socialists and conservatives fought to a virtual tie in local
elections, highlighting the deep divisions in the country a year
before national elections. The opposition People’s Party (PP) led by
Mariano Rajoy won 35.6% vs. 34.9% for the Socialists.
(AP, 5/27/07)(Econ, 6/9/07, p.59)
2007 May 28, Spain arrested 2
Algerians and 14 Moroccans, on suspicion of recruiting volunteers to
fight in Iraq and other countries.
(AP, 5/28/07)(SFC, 5/29/07, p.A3)(WSJ, 5/29/07,
2007 May 31, The Spanish
government said it has filed a lawsuit in a US federal court against
an American firm over a shipwreck the company has found laden with a
2007 Jun 5, In Spain the Basque
separatist group ETA called off its 15-month-old cease-fire,
formalizing what many saw as the demise of a once-promising peace
process already struck down by a deadly bombing in December.
2007 Jun 5, Spanish media said
a court has ordered police to capture and search two vessels
belonging to a Florida firm that recently announced it had found a
shipwreck in the Atlantic Ocean laden with an estimated $500 million
worth of Colonial-era treasure.
2007 Jun 7, In Spain Monzer
al-Kassar (61), a Syrian arms dealer previously accused of arming
militants from Iraq to Somalia, was arrested on suspicion of
plotting to send millions of dollars worth of weapons to Colombian
rebels. A federal indictment unsealed in NYC said al-Kassar has
provided weapons and military equipment to violent factions in
Nicaragua, Brazil, Cyprus, Bosnia, Croatia, Somalia, Iran and Iraq.
Tareq Mousa al Ghazi and Luis Filipe Moreno Godoy, also included in
the indictment, were arrested in Romania.
2007 Jun 8, Spanish police
arrested Arnaldo Otegi (48), the Basque separatist movement's most
prominent politician, on a court order for him to start serving a
15-month sentence for defending terrorism. A judge indicted 32
people on charges of belonging to or collaborating with a militant
group working in Spain to recruit fighters for al-Qaida in Iraq.
(AP, 6/8/07)(AP, 6/9/07)
2007 Jun 16, Spanish police,
working with US and British authorities, seized four tons of cocaine
aboard a ship off the northwest coast.
2007 Jun 28, Federal
authorities in Brazil arrested 10 Brazilians accused of luring South
American women to Spain and forcing them into prostitution.
2007 Jun 29, Spanish
researchers said they had unearthed a human tooth more than one
million years old, which they estimated to be the oldest human
fossil remain ever discovered in western Europe.
2007 Jul 2, In Yemen a suicide
bomber plowed his car into people visiting a temple linked to the
ancient Queen of Sheba, killing seven Spaniards and two Yemenis.
2007 Jul 3, Spanish PM Jose
Luis Rodriguez Zapatero promised that every child born in Spain
would receive a baby bonus of €2,500, according to national press
(Econ, 2/16/08, p.59)(http://piurl.com/5i)
2007 Jul 8, Spain's largest
fighting bulls lived up to their fearsome reputation, goring two and
crushing at least seven people as thousands of daredevils sprinted
down narrow streets Sunday in Pamplona's annual running of the
2007 Jul 12, In Spain charging
bulls gored 7 people and seriously injured several others as this
year's San Fermin festival in Pamplona served up its longest and
most dangerous run yet.
2007 Jul 12, Spanish Civil
Guards heightened a battle over a $500 million treasure of gold and
silver coins from a shipwreck when they seized the Ocean Alert, a
vessel belonging to a Tampa, Fla.,-based company. The ship was
released a week later.
(AP, 7/12/07)(Econ, 7/21/07, p.51)
2007 Jul 13, The Great Canary
Telescope, one of the most powerful in the world, began spying on
the universe, using its 34-foot wide mirror to search for planets
similar to our own from a mountaintop on one of Spain's Canary
Islands. The Canary Island observatory said institutes in Mexico and
the US collaborated in the project, involving more than 1,000 people
in nearly 100 companies.
2007 Jul 15, Spanish officials
said police investigating a child pornography ring have arrested 66
people and seized computer hard drives containing 48 million
photographs and video images. The nationwide sweep came after a
2007 Jul 19, Up to 50 migrants
were missing in rough seas south of the Canary Islands after their
2007 Jul 21, Jesus de Polanco
(77), chairman of Spain's main media group Prisa and one of the
country's richest men, died in Madrid.
2007 Jul 23, Spain arrested
Roberto Florez Garcia in Tenerife, the Canary Islands, for selling
the identity of Spanish spies and other information about the
intelligence agency from 2001 until he left the service in 2004.
Police accused him of being a double agent for Russia.
(AP, 7/24/07)(WSJ, 1/25/07, p.A1)
2007 Jul 24, Barcelona, Spain,
faced Day Two of a major power outage.
2007 Jul 25, Miguel Angel
Moratinos, Spain’s Foreign Minister arrived in Algeria on a visit
aimed at strengthening cooperation in energy and sorting out a row
with Madrid's top gas supplier.
2007 Jul 26, Juan Cruz Maiza,
the alleged head of ETA’s logistics, was arrested in France along
with two helpers.
(Econ, 8/4/07, p.44)
2007 Jul 30, A raging forest
fire has destroyed thousands of acres of woodland on Spain's Gran
Canaria island and forced the evacuation of more than 2,000 people.
2007 Aug 24, In Spain a van
loaded with explosives blew up outside a police station in the
Basque city of Durango, slightly injuring two officers in what
appeared to be the first major attack by the separatist group ETA
since it called off a cease-fire in June.
2007 Sep 1, Police arrested
four suspected members of the armed Basque separatist group ETA in
south-west France, believed to be linked to the deadly Madrid
airport bomb in December.
2007 Sep 9, Shepherds from 32
countries joined their Spanish colleagues to lead flocks of sheep
through the streets of downtown Madrid in defense of ancient grazing
routes threatened by urban sprawl and manmade frontiers. Modern-day
Madrid lies squarely in the way of two venerable north-south routes,
one dating back to 1372.
2007 Sep 20, Spain’s Interior
Ministry said Spanish police and the FBI had arrested two Pakistani
nationals in a joint operation in Madrid and Barcelona on suspicion
of being involved in financing international terrorism. The men,
identified as Anar Muhammad Shan and Preces Mehmood Sandhu, were
also held on suspicion of belonging to a terrorist organization.
2007 Oct 4, Spanish police
arrested almost the entire leadership of Batasuna as the banned
party held a meeting in the Basque town of Segura. The operation
confirmed the hard line against ETA by the Socialist government of
PM Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero since the armed group officially
ended a 15-month-old ceasefire in June.
2007 Oct 9, A car bomb exploded
in the northern city of Bilbao in Spain's Basque Country, badly
burning a man who worked as a bodyguard for a local politician.
2007 Oct 24, Spanish police
broke up an Islamic cell suspected of using the Internet to recruit
fighters for the Iraq insurgency, arresting six people in raids near
the northern city of Burgos.
2007 Oct 28, The Vatican staged
its largest mass beatification ceremony ever, putting 498 victims
(1934-1937) of religious persecution before and during Spain's civil
war on the path to possible sainthood.
2007 Oct 31, Spanish lawmakers
passed historic legislation condemning Gen. Francisco Franco's coup
and nearly 40-year fascist dictatorship, brushing aside complaints
from the conservative opposition that the bill would reopen old
divides. 3 lead defendants in the 2004 Madrid terror bombings that
killed 191 people were convicted of murder by the Spanish court.
Four other top suspects were acquitted of murder but convicted of
lesser charges. In all 21 of the 28 defendants were convicted.
2007 Nov 7, Moroccan PM Abbas
El Fassi condemned Spain's "occupation" of two disputed enclaves, in
the wake of a visit by Spain's King Juan Carlos which prompted Rabat
to recall its ambassador to Madrid.
2007 Nov 13, Two cartoonists
who depicted Spain's crown prince having sex with his wife were
convicted of insulting the heir to the throne and were fined $4,370
2007 Nov 16, In Spain
negotiators concluded a policy guide for governments on global
warming that declares climate change is here and is getting worse.
2007 Dec 1, ETA gunmen shot and
killed a Spanish policeman and seriously injured another in France,
the first killing by the Basque separatist group in almost a year.
2007 Dec 5, French police
arrested two armed people in connection with a weekend shooting that
left two Spanish officers dead in what authorities described as the
first Basque-related killings in France in more than three decades.
2007 Dec 6, Zimbabwean
President Robert Mugabe arrived in Lisbon for an EU-Africa summit,
which British Prime Minister Gordon Brown is boycotting because he
would not "sit down at the same table" as him.
2007 Dec 8, In Spain 53 African
and 27 European countries began a summit to bury old colonial
relationships in favor of something more modern. German Chancellor
Angela Merkel challenged European and African leaders to confront
human rights abuses in Zimbabwe, putting the country's president
Robert Mugabe in the spotlight at an EU-Africa summit.
(Econ, 12/8/07, p.54)(AP, 12/8/07)
2007 Dec 9, In Lisbon, Spain,
Senegal's Pres. Abdoulaye Wade said most African leaders have
rejected EU proposals for a free-trade deal that would replace
colonial-era trading systems at a summit marred by disputes over
Zimbabwe and Darfur. Africa and Europe's first summit in seven years
ended without agreement on the key issue of trade.
(AP, 12/9/07)(Reuters, 12/9/07)
2007 Dec 13, EU leaders signed
the Treaty of Lisbon to reform the bloc's institutions and give it
stronger leadership, marking the end of a difficult process that has
lasted nearly a decade.
2007 Dec 16, Spanish police
said they had arrested 63 people across the country in five
investigations into child pornography being posted, viewed and paid
for on the Internet.
2007 Dec 16, Spanish
construction group BTP Sacyr Vallehermoso said it had created a
joint company with the Libyan government to bid for infrastructure
2007 Dec 20, Spain banned
parents from using corporal punishment on children.
(WSJ, 12/21/07, p.A1)
2007 Dec 22, Spain's "El
Gordo," the world's biggest lottery, gave out 2.2 billion euros
($3.2 billion) in Christmas prizes.
2007 Dec 30, Spain’s Catholic
bishops called some 150,000 people onto the streets of Madrid for a
rally dubbed “Christian Family Day,” in opposition to Socialist PM
(Econ, 1/12/08, p.46)
2007 Spain’s Santander Bank
acquired ABN’s Brazilian unit.
(Econ, 5/15/10, SR p.15)
2008 Jan 12, Angel Gonzalez
(82), one of Spain's most prominent poets and member of a literary
generation known for its opposition to the dictatorship of Gen.
Francisco Franco, died.
2008 Jan 19, In Spain civil
guard police found explosives and other equipment during raids on
five addresses in Barcelona and arrested 12 Pakistanis and two
Indians after receiving information from its own and other European
2008 Feb 11, Spanish police
arrested at least 13 members of the outlawed Basque separatist party
Batasuna in a crackdown on groups linked to the armed organization
ETA before next month's elections.
2008 Feb 27, Spanish judges
acquitted 20 Islamic terror suspects of the most serious charges in
an alleged plot to blow up a court, but convicted them of lesser
2008 Feb, A senior Spanish
judge issued arrest warrants against 40 Rwandan army officers,
including 11 generals, for genocide and crimes against humanity
related to events that took place between 1994 and 2000.
2008 Mar 1, In Spain thousands
of pro-hunting demonstrators blowing bugles and accompanied by
hunting dogs, thronged a boulevard in central Madrid to protest a
law restricting the use of lead shot.
2008 Mar 7, Both of Spain's
major political parties called off all election campaigning
nationwide after Isaias Carrasco, a former city councilman, was shot
dead in the Basque region just two days before general elections.
2008 Mar 9, Spaniards voted in
a general election after a divisive campaign dominated by economic
concerns. PM Zapatero won re-election as the Socialists gained five
seats for a total of 169 in the 350-seat parliament. The opposition
conservative Popular Party (PP) also gained five seats to reach 153,
while smaller left-wing parties and some nationalist parties lost
(AP, 3/9/08)(AP, 3/10/08)(WSJ, 3/10/08, p.A1)
2008 Mar 16, Ola Brunkert (62),
a former drummer for 1970s Swedish pop group ABBA, was found dead
after an apparent accident in his house in Mallorca. He first played
with ABBA on the group's first single, "People Need Love," and
toured with the band in 1977, 1979 and 1980.
2008 Mar 21, In Spain a car
bomb exploded at a police barracks in the northern Rioja region
following a warning from the Basque separatist organization ETA,
injuring one person.
2008 Mar 24, Rafael Azcona
(b.1926), Spanish novelist and scriptwriter, died. He was known for
films such as the Oscar-winning comedy "Belle Epoque" and Luis
Garcia Berlanga's "The Executioner."
2008 Apr 1, Pedro Zaragoza Orts
(85), former Spanish mayor of Benidorm (1950-1967), died. In 1952 he
allowed the newfangled bikinis everywhere in town. During his term
he turned his town into a mecca for tourists from northern Europe.
(Econ, 4/19/08, p.105)
2008 Apr 7, Spanish officials
said 2 people in Spain have died of the human variant of mad cow
disease, in the first such fatalities since 2005. The two new
victims apparently contracted the disease prior to 2001 and health
controls on livestock and meat production are much tighter now than
they were then. Spain has reported more than 700 cases of mad cow
disease since it was first detected in this country in 2000.
2008 Apr 9, Spanish astronomers
announced the discovery of "GJ 436T," the smallest planet discovered
to date outside the solar system, located 30 light years from earth.
2008 Apr 12, Spain's re-elected
PM Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero was sworn in for his second term. He
announced a government which for the first time included more women
than men and a female defense minister.
2008 Apr 17, In Spain a bomb
exploded in the offices of the governing Socialist party in the
northern Basque city of Bilbao, injuring seven police officers.
2008 Apr 18,
Spain's newly re-elected government announced an
18-billion-euro plan to revive the economy, which is suffering a
slowdown after a decade-long boom that had been the envy of the rest
2008 Apr 19, In southern Spain
a crash of a bus filled with Finnish tourists left nine people dead
near the resort town of Benalmadena. Police arrested the driver of
the other vehicle, who was not seriously injured, after he failed a
blood alcohol test.
2008 Apr 20, Pirates off the
Somali coast, armed with grenade launchers, stormed a Spanish tuna
fishing boat, the Playa de Bakio, with 26 crew members.
2008 Apr 26, The Spanish
government said the 26 crew members onboard the Playa de Bakio
fishing boat, hijacked by pirates off the coast of Somalia nearly a
week ago, have been freed. A maritime official said it was freed
after a 1.2 million-dollar ransom was paid.
(AP, 4/26/08)(AP, 4/27/08)
2008 May 1, Three bombs
exploded in Spain's Basque region. No one was injured in the blasts,
which police said were carried out by the separatist group ETA.
2008 May 3, The Asian
Development Bank, announced emergency funding to help poor countries
struggling with rice prices that have nearly tripled in four months.
The Manila-based organization made the announcement while meeting in
2008 May 8, Spain formally laid
claim to a shipwreck that yielded a $500 million treasure, saying it
has proof the vessel was Spanish. Officials said the shipwreck at
the heart of the dispute is the Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, a
Spanish warship sunk by the British navy southwest of Portugal in
1804 with more than 200 people on board.
2008 May 14, In Spain a
booby-trapped van exploded outside a civil guard barracks in the
restive Basque country, killing one guard and wounding four others.
The government blamed the attack on separatist group ETA.
2008 May 17, Spanish police
announced the arrest of five people this week suspected of hacking
into or outright disabling thousands of Internet pages, some of them
run by government agencies in the US, Latin America and Asia. Two of
the suspects were 16 years old. The others were 19 or 20.
2008 May 19, Suspected members
of a Basque separatist group allegedly exploded a car bomb in a
northern Basque town, causing considerable damage but no injuries.
2008 May 20, Xavier Lopez Pena
(49), the suspected leader of the Basque separatist group ETA, was
detained along with three other suspected ETA members in a sweep on
an apartment in the French city of Bordeaux just before midnight.
2008 May 21, The interior
ministers of Senegal and Spain signed an agreement extending
cooperation between the west African nation and the EU border
control agency Frontex to combat illegal immigration by one year.
2008 May 25, Spanish coastguard
boats rescued 67 immigrants, including two corpses, from the sea
near the Canary Islands.
2008 Jun 5, Dutch police
arrested Aqueel Ur Rehman Abbasi, a 26-year-old Pakistani man,
sought in Spain on terrorism charges. He was arrested in his prison
cell in Vught where he was being held by the immigration and
2008 Jun 10, Spanish officials
announced the arrest of 8 suspected members of an Islamic extremist
cell. The Europa Press news agency said the detainees were suspected
of raising money for terrorist activities.
2008 Jun 11, Spain deployed
riot police to lift striking truckers' blockades of a border
crossing with France and a major highway outside Madrid and made
dozens of arrests.
2008 Jun 13, A Spanish judge
jailed six Algerians on provisional charges of aiding terror groups
linked to al-Qaida in North Africa.
2008 Jun 13, The US Embassy in
Madrid said suspected Syrian arms dealer Monzer al-Kassar was
extradited to the US. He was arrested in Spain in June 2007 as part
of a US sting operation. The United States said he had plotted to
buy weapons for leftist rebels in Colombia.
2008 Jun 14, Zaragoza, Spain,
opened a World Expo and expected some 6 million visitors. The expo
was due to close on Sep 14.
(SSFC, 3/25/07, p.G2)
2008 Jun 14, Spanish police
said they had charged 20 people with exchanging child pornography
online and arrested 14 others in a nationwide operation.
2008 Jun 15, Rafael Del Pino Y
Moreno (b.1920), Spain’s “King of the Bricks,” died. His Grupo
Ferrovial SA built the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao and other
emblematic infrastructure across Spain.
(WSJ, 6/21/08, p.A6)
2008 Jun 25, Spain's parliament
voiced its support for the rights of great apes to life and freedom
in what will apparently be the first time any national legislature
has called for such rights for non-humans.
2008 Jun 27, In Spain the
Basque parliament approved a plan for a regional referendum on
self-determination, setting the stage for a confrontation with the
central Spanish government in Madrid which has condemned the poll as
2008 Jun 29, Spain’s soccer
team beat Germany 1-0 to win the Euro 2008 finals.
2008 Jul 9, A Spanish patrol
boat rescued 33 people and recovered one body from the boat off the
coast of southern Almeria province. 15 African migrants, most of
them small children, died of hunger, thirst or exposure as they
drifted across the Mediterranean on the small, overcrowded boat.
2008 Jul 14, Spain's biggest
bank, Santander, said it had reached agreement to buy British lender
Alliance and Leicester in an all-share deal worth 1.26 billion
pounds (1.57 billion euros) as it continues its push into the
2008 Jul 14, Spanish
construction giant Martinsa-Fadesa announced in a filing with
Spanish stock market regulators that it is seeking protection from
2008 Jul 15, A plan for a
referendum on self-determination in Spain's northern Basque Country
became law in the region, setting the stage for a confrontation with
the government in Madrid which has termed the poll illegal.
2008 Jul 16, In Spain King
Abdullah of Saudi Arabia kicked off an interfaith conference in
Madrid, an effort to bring Muslims, Christians and Jews closer
together amid a world that often puts the three faiths at odds.
2008 Jul 18, In Spain, a
spokesman said police in the southern city of Seville have been left
red-faced after more than 100 kilos of drugs were stolen from police
headquarters and replaced with talcum powder.
2008 Jul 18, In Spain a
Saudi-organized conference of the world's great religions called for
an international agreement to combat terrorism, "a universal
phenomenon that requires unified international efforts."
2008 Jul 20, In northern Spain
4 bombs exploded at popular seaside resorts in Cantabria, after
warning calls from the Basque separatist group ETA. No casualties
2008 Jul 22, Spanish police
dismantled the most active cell of the armed Basque separatist group
ETA with the detention of nine suspected members of the group. Among
those captured was Arkaitz Goikoetxea, the leader of the "Vizcaya"
cell which Spanish authorities suspect was behind most of the
attacks carried out by ETA since it called off a ceasefire in June
2008 Jul 26, In Spain Maria
Remedios Garcia Albert (57) was arrested in San Lorenzo de el
Escorial on suspicion of belonging to Colombia's FARC rebel group.
2008 Jul 27, Spain's National
Court jailed seven people on charges of belonging to a militant cell
of the Basque separatist group ETA.
2008 Jul 31, Venezuela’s Pres.
Chavez said his government will nationalize Banco de Venezuela, the
local unit of the Spanish banking giant Banco Santander.
(WSJ, 7/31/08, p.A6)
2008 Aug 12, Spanish officials
said local police acting on a tip-off from US authorities have
seized 1.4 tons of cocaine and arrested eight South American
suspects, 6 from Colombia and 2 from Venezuela.
2008 Aug 13, An alleged assault
by Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal (b.1955) reportedly took place on
a young model (20) on a yacht on the Mediterranean island of Ibiza.
An investigating magistrate on the resort island closed the case in
2010 on grounds of insufficient evidence. In 2011 Spain reopened a
rape probe after tests done by a forensic lab found semen in the
woman and traces of a sedative called nordazepam.
2008 Aug 14, American Airlines,
British Airways and Iberia of Spain said they had signed an
agreement to cooperate over flights between North America and Europe
to help them overcome soaring fuel costs.
2008 Aug 18, Equatorial
Guinea's exiled opposition leader Severo Moto was released from a
Spanish jail four months after he was detained for allegedly trying
to send weapons to the oil-rich African nation.
2008 Aug 20, A Spanair MD-82
bound for the Canary Islands caught fire while trying to make an
emergency landing just after departing from Madrid airport leaving
153 people dead. This was the nation's worst air disaster in nearly
25 years. The toll rose to 154 on Aug 23 leaving 18 survivors. In
2010 authorities investigating the crash of Spanair flight 5022
discovered a central computer system used to monitor technical
problems in the aircraft was infected with malware.
(AP, 8/20/08)(AP, 8/21/08)(Reuters,
2008 Aug 27, In Spain tens of
thousands of people from around the world hurled tons of ripe
tomatoes at each other in the annual food fight in the eastern
Spanish town of Bunol.
2008 Sep 1, A Spanish judge
began gathering information about people who disappeared during
Spain's civil war and subsequent dictatorship, seeking to produce a
reliable list of victims slain away from the battlefield during the
vicious fight between left and right.
2008 Sep 3, Spanish authorities
found 13 bodies and 46 survivors on a packed migrant boat near one
of Spain's Canary Islands.
2008 Sep 4, Spanish police
arrested Vallejo-Guarin (47), a suspected Colombian drug trafficker,
listed among the most wanted by the US Drug Enforcement
2008 Sep 7-2008 Sep 8, Spanish
police said immigrants went on a rampage in the southern Spanish
town of Roquetas de Mar overnight, setting fire to homes and cars
and throwing stones at police, after a Senegalese man (28) was
stabbed to death in an apparent dispute over drugs. The Rampage
continued for a 2nd night.
(Reuters, 9/7/08)(AP, 9/8/08)
2008 Sep 19, Spain approved a
decree under which it will pay jobless immigrants to go home, more
evidence of how its once-booming economy has quickly gone bust.
2008 Sep 21, In northeast Spain
suspected Basque separatists threw petrol bombs at a police station
in Ondorroa to lure officers outside before detonating a car bomb,
which injured 10 people. The attack came only hours after a car bomb
exploded in the regional capital of Vitoria. Nobody was injured.
Authorities suspected ETA.
2008 Sep 22, In northern Spain
a car bomb killed a soldier in the third attack in just over 24
hours by the Basque separatist group ETA.
2008 Oct 1, Spanish police said
they have staged their biggest ever operation against Internet child
pornography, arresting 121 people suspected of involvement in a
network that reached 75 countries. Some 800 police took part in
Operation Carousel, an investigation that began last year in
cooperation with Brazilian police.
2008 Oct 10, Spain's government
insisted that a 30 billion euros ($41 billion) fund it will use to
buy assets from banks starved for liquidity will have zero cost for
2008 Oct 14, The World
Conservation Congress ended in Barcelona, Spain. The meeting was
awash in gloomy forecasts.
(Econ, 10/18/08, p.68)
2008 Oct 16, Spain's leading
judge agreed to investigate the disappearances of tens thousands of
people during the 1936-39 civil war and the ensuing Franco
dictatorship, many of whom are believed to be buried in mass graves.
Spanish police arrested 13 men accused of harboring Islamic
extremists and helping them flee the country, including several
suspects in the Madrid terror bombings of 2004.
(AFP, 10/16/08)(AP, 10/16/08)
2008 Oct 30, A powerful car
bomb exploded at a university in the northern Spanish city of
Pamplona, wounding 17 people and setting a building on fire in an
attack blamed on Basque separatists.
2008 Oct 31, Spain approved a
measure to let descendants of people who fled into exile after its
1936-39 Civil War apply for Spanish citizenship. The government said
it believes up to 500,000 children and grandchildren of such emigres
are eligible. The government says 300,000 of those people live in
2008 Nov 3, Spain's government,
grappling with soaring unemployment and an economy buffeted by the
global credit crunch, announced a plan to help families make
mortgage payments and reward businesses that hire.
2008 Nov 4, Spain’s government
reported that the number of people claiming unemployment benefits
has jumped to 2.8 million (11.3%), the highest since 1996, in the
latest devastating fallout from the international financial crisis.
2008 Nov 7, European planemaker
Airbus said that Spanish tourism company Grupo Marsans has signed a
firm order for 61 aircraft worth almost $9 billion at list prices.
2008 Nov 9, In western
Afghanistan a Taliban suicide attacker rammed a bomb-filled minivan
into a NATO military convoy, killing two Spanish soldiers and
critically wounding another.
2008 Nov 9, Egyptian
authorities denied entry to one of Osama bin Laden's sons and put
him on a plane to Qatar, becoming the third country to reject the
self-proclaimed "ambassador for peace." Omar Osama bin Laden (27)
and his British wife, Zaina Alsabah (52), arrived at Cairo
International Airport over the weekend after he unsuccessfully tried
to seek political asylum in Spain.
2008 Nov 17, French police
arrested ETA's alleged military chief, the most wanted Basque
separatist still at large and a man Spanish officials branded a
"bloodthirsty terrorist." Miguel De Garikoitz Aspiazu Rubina (35),
alias "Txeroki", was captured in Cauterets, a spa and ski resort in
the Pyrenees near the border with Spain's autonomous Basque region.
On Nov 24 Spain indicted Aspiazu and four other men over the car
bombing at a Madrid airport parking garage on Dec. 30, 2006.
(AFP, 11/17/08)(AP, 11/24/08)
2008 Nov 18, Spanish artist
Miquel Barcelo unveiled his lavish, $23 million ceiling painting at
the European headquarters of the United Nations in Switzerland, a
project that has evoked controversy over its hefty price tag.
2008 Nov 18, Spain's most
famous judge abandoned a drive for a symbolic indictment of the late
Gen. Francisco Franco and his regime, dropping a probe into
atrocities committed during and after the country's ruinous civil
2008 Nov 19, Spanish doctors
reported the successful transplant to a woman of a new windpipe with
tissue grown from her own stem cells, eliminating the need for
2008 Nov 27, Spain's prime
minister announced an euro11 billion ($14 billion) stimulus plan to
revive the country's flagging economy.
2008 Nov 27, In Spain novelist
Juan Marse (75), known for his descriptions of hardship in Catalonia
during the Spanish civil war (1936-1939), won the Cervantes Prize,
the Spanish speaking world’s highest literary prize.
(SFC, 11/28/08, p.E10)
2009 Nov 29, In Mauritania 3
Spanish volunteers were kidnapped by gunmen. Spain's interior
minister said the next day that he suspected al-Qaida-linked
Islamists were behind the attack. On Dec 2 a Mauritanian official
said the 3 aid workers were being taken by their captors to
neighboring Mali. Aid worker Alicia Gamez (35) was released on March
10, 2010. Businessmen Roque Pascual and Albert Vilalta remained
captive. Al-Qaida's offshoot in North Africa said on March 12 that
it had released Gamez because she voluntarily converted to Islam.
(AP, 11/30/09)(AP, 12/2/09)(AP, 3/10/10)(AP,
2008 Dec 3, In Spain's northern
Basque region suspected ETA separatists shot and killed a
businessman in the first attack linked to the group since the arrest
of its military chief last month.
2008 Dec 11, As Greece suffered
through its sixth day of violence, there were troubling signs of
unrest spreading across Europe. Angry youths smashed shop windows,
attacked banks and hurled bottles at police in small but violent
protests in Spain and Denmark, while cars were set alight outside a
consulate in France.
2008 Dec 13, In northern Spain
about 100 demonstrators, formerly jailed as members of the violent
Basque group ETA, protested and called on the government to begin
talks to end the region's long-running separatist conflict.
2008 Dec 16, In Spain an
unoccupied hotel on the resort island of Mallorca partially
collapsed during remodeling work, killing four workers.
2008 Dec 26, Spain approved a
new provision that also allows anyone whose parents or grandparents
were born in Spain but went overseas because of their political
beliefs or economic hardship to become Spaniards.
2008 In Spain Simona Levi, a
theater director, launched Xnet with a plan to protect cultural
freedom. The project changed radically on May 15, 2011, referred to
colloquially as 15-M, when the economic crisis gripping Spain gave
birth to the "Indignados" movement. It then developed into an
Internet-based project for stamping out Spanish corruption.
2008 Spain’s population reached
45 million, up from 40 million in 2000, mostly due to immigration.
12% of the population was foreign born, up from 3% in 1998.
(Econ, 11/8/08, SR p.11,16)
2009 Jan 8, In Spain Leonidas
Vargas (60), a convicted Colombian drug baron with links to two
major smuggling cartels, was shot dead in a Madrid hospital.
2009 Jan 19, An Atheist Bus
Campaign's message, translated into Catalan, began appearing on two
routes in Barcelona, with plans to extend the campaign to the rest
of the country. A campaign with the concise message "There's
probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life," took to the
road in Britain this month. In Italy buses with the slogan "The bad
news is that God does not exist. The good news is that we do not
need him" will begin traversing the northern Italian city of Genoa
on February 4.
2009 Jan 20, In Spain 6 people
of Pakistani origin were arrested on suspicion of "fraud" in
Barcelona. They were suspected of financing terrorist activities by
carrying out thefts and sending money raised from criminal
activities to Pakistan.
2009 Jan 24, A storm killed 11
people in Spain, including four children who were killed when a
sports center collapsed near Barcelona, and four in France as high
winds swept across Spain and southern France.
(AP, 1/24/09)(AP, 1/25/09)
2009 Jan 26, Spain's Prado
Museum named Asensio Julia as the workshop assistant believed mostly
likely to have painted "Colossus" (1808-1912), a work that was once
attributed to Francisco de Goya y Lucientes.
2009 Feb 3, Spanish police
arrested 13 people on suspicion of links to organized crime and
2009 Feb 9, Spain's interior
minister blamed the armed Basque separatist group ETA for an
explosion in the east of Madrid, which police said caused extensive
damage but no casualties.
2009 Feb 16, In Spain Samsung
of South Korea unveiled the world's first solar-powered mobile phone
at an industry show where the sector is showcasing the new
technology it hopes will drive demand through the economic crisis.
2009 Feb 19, In Spain the
mobile phone industry's biggest trade show wrapped up after four
days that delivered exciting news for technophiles, average phone
users and even environmentalists. During the show leading
manufacturers announced an initiative to produce a standard charger
that would fit all phones by 2012 in a step set to reduce waste and
2009 Feb 25, Spain’s Foreign
Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos said Spain is open 'in principle' to
accepting prisoners from the US prison camp at Guantanamo Bay.
2009 Mar 1, In Spain Basque
voters chose a new government. Socialists scored big electoral gains
at the expense of nationalists who have held power there for nearly
30 years. The nationalist coalition with 37 seats fell one seat
short of the needed majority.
(AP, 3/1/09)(AP, 3/2/09)(SFC, 3/2/09, p.A2)
2009 Mar 10, Spanish police
said they have arrested an Ecuadorian woman who tried to smuggle
into Barcelona liquid cocaine hidden in spray cans of products to
starch clothes or clean glass.
2009 Mar 19, Venezuela’s Pres.
Chaves announced the nationalization of Banco de Venezuela, a unit
of Spain’s Banco Santander SA.
(WSJ, 3/20/09, p.A10)
2009 Mar 29, In Spain tens of
thousands of demonstrators crowded central Madrid, chanting slogans
against government plans to liberalize the country's abortion laws.
2009 Apr 2, Morocco transferred
to Spain Hassan Al Haski, an Islamist convicted in both countries
for terrorist acts, apparently to resume serving time behind bars
2009 Apr 10, In France Ekaitz
Sirvent Auzmendi (29), suspected of being a master forger for ETA,
was captured by French and Spanish police as he got off a bullet
train that had arrived from Bordeaux at the French capital's
2009 Apr 11, Corin Tellado
(81), a well-known Spanish author of more than 4,000 romance novels,
died while celebrating the Easter holidays with her family.
2009 Apr 18, French and Spanish
security forces thwarted a new ETA attack with the arrest of Jurdan
Martitegi, the military chief of the Basque separatist group, and
seven other suspected members.
(AFP, 4/19/09)(Econ, 4/25/09, p.56)
2009 Apr 18, Jon Anza Ortunez
(47), a member of the armed Basque group ETA, was last seen. ETA
blamed Spanish police for a role in his disappearance — a claim
Spain denied. ETA said Anza had been transporting a large sum of
money between the French cities of Bayonne, which is not far from
the border with Spain, and Toulouse for the group when he vanished.
In 2010 his body turned up in a morgue in France. French officials
told Anza's family that he had fallen ill on a street on April 29
and was taken to a hospital in Toulouse, where he died May 11. At
the time, no one was reportedly able to identify him.
2009 Apr 27, Governments around
the world acted to stem a possible flu pandemic, as a virus that has
killed 103 people in Mexico and spread to North America was
confirmed to have reached Europe. Spain's Health Ministry confirmed
the country's first case of swine flu and said another 20 people are
suspected of having the disease.
(Reuters, 4/27/09)(AP, 4/27/09)
2009 May 3, In northwest Spain
one member of the country’s second-place junior female volleyball
team died and 12 others were injured, two seriously, in a bus crash.
The Emeve de Lugo team had just arrived in Santiago de Compostela
from the Canary Islands when their bus overturned.
2009 May 5, In Spain Basque
Socialist leader Patxi Lopez (49), expected to be sworn in as the
Basque region's first non-nationalist president, vowed to wage a
relentless fight against the armed separatist group ETA.
2009 May 6, Spanish authorities
said they have arrested 29 people suspected of forging credit cards
to finance an elaborate scheme to smuggle Cubans into the US from
2009 May 14, In Spain a new
study said the air in Madrid and Barcelona is laced with at least
five drugs, including trace amounts of amphetamines, opiates,
cannabinoids and lysergic acid, a relative of LSD. The tests were
done in areas where drugs were likely to be consumed.
2009 May 15, In Spain police
arrested of Raffaele Amato, an alleged Camorra boss who
investigators say was one of Italy's top cocaine importers.
2009 May 19, A Spanish court
sentenced three senior army officers to prison for knowingly
misidentifying the bodies of 30 peacekeepers killed in a plane crash
on May 26, 2003, in northwestern Turkey. 32 of the Spaniards were
identified correctly but relatives of the other 30 got the wrong
2009 May 27, In Spain some
100,000 people spilled onto the streets of the Catalan capital after
Barcelona's 2-0 triumph over Manchester United in Rome. The carnival
atmosphere turned ugly after midnight when youths began clashing
with police around Las Ramblas, the city's most famous street.
Police arrested 134 people and more than 150 were injured.
2009 Jun 4, British naturalist
Sir David Attenborough won Spain's prestigious Prince of Asturias
social sciences prize for his "great contributions to the defense of
life and conservation of our planet."
2009 Jun 17, American engineers
Raymond Tomlinson (b.1941) and Martin Cooper (b.1928), who were
instrumental in developing e-mail and mobile phones, won one of
Spain's prestigious Prince of Asturias awards for revolutionizing
the way people communicate.
2009 Jun 19, In Spain a
powerful bomb exploded near the Basque city of Bilbao, killing a
policeman in an attack blamed on the separatist group ETA.
2009 Jun 25, Spanish
legislators voted to change a law that let judges indict Osama bin
Laden and Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet, narrowing its scope to
cases with a clear link to this country and yielding to criticism
that Spain should not be a global cop.
2009 Jul 1, In San Sebastian,
Spain, a meeting was underway of five regional fisheries management
organizations, tasked primarily with protecting tuna populations
worldwide. The groups representing 80 countries met for the first
time in two years to assess stocks of the fish and determine what
more can be done to save the 23 tuna populations, nine of which are
2009 Jul 2, Spain's
intelligence chief, Alberto Saiz, resigned amid allegations he used
government money to go on hunting and fishing trips and had staffers
remodel his house.
2009 Jul 4, A joint
French-Spanish operation captured 3 suspected members of ETA in the
French city of Pau.
(SFC, 7/6/09, p.A2)
2009 Jul 7, Spanish police
arrested Jorge Alberto Soza (72), an ex-Argentine police official
suspected of human rights abuses committed during the South American
country's dirty war. Soza was wanted in Argentina in connection with
18 cases of kidnapping and torture between 1975 and 1977 when he was
an assistant Federal Police commissioner and chief delegate in the
southern Argentine city of Neuquen.
2009 Jul 10, In Spain charging
bull gored a young Spanish man to death at Pamplona's San Fermin
festival, the first such fatality in nearly 15 years. Nine others
were injured in a particularly dangerous and chaotic chapter of the
running of the bulls.
2009 Jul 12, In Spain 10 people
were injured, two of them seriously, in the Pamplona bull run, two
days after a man was gored to death by a bull.
2009 Jul 21, Mali's president's
office announced that Spain plans to help Mali fight Al-Qaeda of the
Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), which is active in the desert north of the
west African nation.
2009 Jul 24, In Europe deadly
summer wild fires spread across Spain, France, Italy and Greece with
holidaymakers rescued from beaches and thousands of firefighters
brought into the battle.
2009 Jul 29, In northern Spain
a powerful car bomb destroyed a police barracks housing officers and
their families in Burgos, injuring about 60 people and causing major
damage in the surrounding area. The attack was blamed on the Basque
separatist group ETA.
2009 Jul 30, On the Spanish
island of Majorca 2 civil guard officers were killed when their
booby-trapped car exploded near a barracks.
2009 Aug 4, Officials said a
forest fire on the Canary Island of La Palma was brought under
control and another that raged for two weeks in Spain's northern
Catalonia region has been extinguished.
2009 Aug 6, Juan Manuel
Inciarte Gallardo (55), a suspected member of the armed Basque group
ETA, was deported from Mexico and arrested in Spain, where he is
wanted for allegedly killing five Spanish police officers and a
pregnant wife of one of the officers. Inciarte allegedly took part
in the slaying of the five police officers and the pregnant wife of
one officer between 1983 and 1985. He was wanted on terrorism
2009 Aug 9, On the Spanish
island of Mallorca a small bomb exploded in a restaurant, causing
minor damage and no injuries. A caller, who said he was calling on
ETA's behalf, warned of the bomb.
2009 Aug 19, French police with
Spanish help detained three suspected members of Basque separatist
group ETA in a French Alps ski resort and seized material for making
explosives, after a series of bombings claimed by the group on the
Spanish island of Mallorca.
2009 Aug 26, In Spain Bunol's
town hall estimated more than 40,000 people, some from as far away
as Japan and Australia, took up arms with 100 tons of tomatoes in
the yearly food fight known as the "Tomatina," now in its 64th year.
2009 Sep 9, Spain’s PM
Rodriguez Zapatero told Parliament the 2010 budget would aim to
raise overall taxes by 1.5% of GDP in order to help meet demands of
the most needy. Unemployment, the worst in Europe, had reached 18%
and was still climbing.
(Econ, 9/12/09, p.58)
2009 Sep 10, Berlin won Spain's
prestigious Prince of Asturias prize for its contribution to
promoting peace and harmony.
2009 Sep 11, Spain's government
agreed to send 220 more troops to Afghanistan, raising the total to
2009 Sep 11, In Spain
Venezuela’s Pres. Chavez paid a brief courtesy call on King Juan
Carlos and met briefly with PM Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero to
discuss energy issues and Spanish investment in oil-rich Venezuela.
2009 Sep 13, Bolivia's Pres.
Evo Morales began a visit to Spain. His plans to nationalize
Bolivia’s electricity sector and how this might affect Spanish
companies will be among the top items on his agenda.
2009 Sep 17, Spanish National
Court Judge Ismael Moreno indicted three alleged ex-Nazi death camp
guards, who are or were longtime residents of the United States,
charging them with being accessories to genocide and crimes against
humanity. Moreno issued international arrest warrants for the three:
Johann Leprich, Anton Tittjung and Josias Kumpf. The 18-page
indictment says Kumpf apparently lives now in Austria and other two
in the US.
2009 Sep 17, Spanish oil major
Repsol YPF said it had discovered oil off the coast of Sierra Leone,
its first find in the west African nation, along with its
Australian, American and British partners.
2009 Sep 22, In Spain Julio
Alberto Poch, an Argentine-born pilot for a low-cost airline, was
arrested during a stopover in a Spanish airport on suspicion of
piloting planes that carried hundreds of dissidents to their deaths
during his country's 1976-1983 "dirty war." He was wanted for
questioning in four probes of more than 1,000 deaths during his time
as a pilot at the Navy Mechanics School.
2009 Sep 22, A sharply divided
EU failed to protect the threatened bluefin tuna, as the bloc's
Mediterranean nations refused to back even a temporary a ban on
catching the fish prized by sushi aficionados. Greece, Cyprus,
Malta, Spain, France and Italy, with strong fishermen's lobbies at
home, insisted on continuing the hunt despite the precarious state
of the species. Conservation groups had earlier criticized the EU
for not pushing to list the bluefin tuna under the Convention on
International Trade in Endangered Species.
2009 Sep 24, Spain said it has
disqualified a group of Israeli academics from a solar power design
competition because their university is in the West Bank, the latest
in a series of low-level European sanctions against Israel over its
2009 Sep 24, In Spain Garry
Kasparov soundly defeated Anatoly Karpov in an exhibition chess
match marking the 25th anniversary of their first title bout.
2009 Sep 25, Spanish pianist
Alicia de Larrocha died (86). She thrilled music listeners for
decades with polished and enthralling interpretations of great
2009 Sep 26, In Spain "City of
Life and Death," Chinese director Lu Chuan's account of the Japanese
occupation of Nanjing in 1937, won top honors at the San Sebastian
2009 Oct 2, In Denmark the IOC
opened a meeting hearing the cases led by government leaders and
kings to win the right to stage the 2016 Olympic Games. US Pres.
Obama spoke for Chicago, Japan's new PM Yukio Hatoyama spoke for
Tokyo, Brazil's President Luiz Inacio Lula Da Silva spoke for Rio de
Janeiro, and Spain's King Juan Carlos and PM Jose Luis Rodriguez
Zapatero spoke for Spain. Brazil won the bid.
(AFP, 10/2/09)(AP, 10/3/09)
2009 Oct 2, Somali pirates
hijacked the Alakrana, a Spanish tuna trawler, with a 36-member crew
in the Indian Ocean 415 miles (670km) from the Seychelles islands.
Two days after the hijacking, Spanish naval forces taking part in
the EU anti-piracy mission captured two suspected pirates as they
tried to travel ashore to Somalia from the Alakrana in a skiff.
(AP, 10/2/09)(AP, 11/5/09)
2009 Oct 6, In Spain part of
the secrecy surrounding the legal proceedings was lifted, new
revelations came out, including phone conversations that had been
taped by police. Francisco Correa, a Spanish businessman, faced jail
as the alleged kingpin in a network of corruption at the heart of
the country's main opposition group, the rightwing People's party.
2009 Oct 10, Stephen Gately
(33), a singer with the Irish boy band Boyzone, died while visiting
Spain’s island of Mallorca. He made headlines a decade ago when he
came out as gay. An autopsy revealed that he died due to excess
fluid in his lungs.
(AP, 10/11/09)(AP, 10/13/09)
2009 Oct 11, Pope Benedict XVI
canonized five new saints, including Father Damien, a 19th-century
priest who worked with leprosy patients on a Hawaiian island;
Zygmunt Szcezesny Felinski, a 19th-century Polish bishop who
defended the Catholic faith during the years of the Russian
annexation; Spaniards Francisco Coll y Guitart, who founded an order
of Dominicans in the 19th century, and Rafael Arniaz Baron, who
renounced an affluent lifestyle at age 22 to live a humble life in a
strict monastery and dedicate himself to prayer; and Jeanne Jugan
(d.1879), a French nun, who helped found the Little Sisters of the
2009 Oct 17, In Spain a huge
crowd rallied in Madrid against a bill to ease restrictions on
abortion, a vivid and emotional show of how the issue remains
sensitive two decades after abortion was legalized in this
traditionally Roman Catholic country.
2009 Oct 22, The EU said it has
launched an investigation into a prized Spanish wetland that has
turned bone dry through mismanagement of water resources and is now
on fire underground, white smoke now rising from areas where fish
once swam. The EU wants the Spanish government to explain how it
plans to save Las Tablas de Daimiel National Park in the central
Castilla-La Mancha region. It is classified as a UNESCO biosphere
site and an EU-protected area because of its birdlife.
2009 Oct 28, Somali pirates
exchanged fire with a French fishing vessel. They sped away, but
were soon stopped by a Spanish naval helicopter. 7 pirates were
detained on the German naval vessel, FGS Karlsruhe.
2009 Nov 3, African countries
boycotted meetings at UN climate talks in Barcelona, saying that
industrial countries had set carbon-cutting targets too low for
reducing global greenhouse gas emissions.
2009 Nov 3, Francisco Ayala
(103), Spanish novelist and sociologist, died in Madrid. He was one
of Spain's leading scholars and had gone into exile during the
country's decades of dictatorship. Ayala published his first book,
"Tragicomedia de un hombre sin espiritu" (Tragicomedy of a Man
Without Spirit), in 1925. The collapse of moral order and the
hopelessness of human relations are also common themes in
pessimistic and satirical novels such as "Muertes de Perro" (Death
as a Way of Life) and "El Jardin de Las Delicias" (Garden of
2009 Nov 12, Spain created its
bank bailout fund, the FROB, with a potential capacity of €99
2009 Nov 12, British Airways
PLC and Spanish airline Iberia SA confirmed they are holding
separate board meetings about a long-awaited merger, responding to
feverish speculation that has sent the companies' shares soaring.
2009 Nov 17, Somali pirates
freed 36 crew members from the Spanish trawler Alakrana after
holding them since Oct 2. A self-proclaimed pirate said the
hostage-takers were paid $3.3 million in ransom, while Spain's PM
Zapatero said the country did what it had to do.
2009 Nov 29, In Mauritania 3
Spanish volunteers were kidnapped by gunmen. Spain's interior
minister said the next day that he suspected al-Qaida-linked
Islamists were behind the attack. On Dec 2 a Mauritanian official
said the 3 aid workers were being taken by their captors to
neighboring Mali. Aid worker Alicia Gamez (35) was released on March
10, 2010. Businessmen Roque Pascual and Albert Vilalta remained
captive. Al-Qaida's offshoot in North Africa said on March 12 that
it had released Gamez because she voluntarily converted to Islam.
Pascual and Vilalta were released in August 2010.
(AP, 11/30/09)(AP, 12/2/09)(AP, 3/10/10)(AP,
2009 Dec 11, In Spain the A400M
military transport plane, that has been causing Airbus and European
defense ministers budgetary and logistical headaches, finally took
to the skies for its maiden flight.
2009 Dec 13, In Spain people in
Catalonia voted in symbolic referendums that organizers hoped would
be a step towards eventual independence from Spain for the wealthy
region. About 94% favored independence with turnout of about 25%.
(AP, 12/13/09)(AP, 12/14/09)
2009 Dec 14, Spain’s National
Court in Madrid found 11 men guilty of belonging to a terrorist
organization and sentenced them to up to 14 years in prison. 9 were
of Pakistani nationality or origin and 2 were from India. They
had been accused of planning attacks in Barcelona.
(SFC, 12/15/09, p.A2)
2009 Dec 22, Spain's Christmas
lottery showered hundreds of thousand of euros (dollars) in prize
money on the country's capital. The top prize of the lottery, ranked
among the world's richest, went to holders of tickets bearing the
number 78294. The number appears on 1,950 tickets, and each holder
stood to win euro300,000 ($430,000).
2009 Dec 30, Spain's socialist
government approved a 1.5% increase in the national minimum wage to
633.3 euros ($911.2) from 624 euros a month during its last cabinet
meeting of the year.
2009 Antonio Munoz Molina
authored his novel “In the Night of Time” set in Spain’s civil war.
In 2014 an English translation by Edith Grossman was published.
(SFC, 2/25/14, p.78)
2009 Roberto Bolano, Spanish
novelist, completed his 3rd and final volume of “Your Face
Tomorrow,” a metaphysical trilogy subtitled “Poison, Shadow and
(Econ, 11/28/09, p.97)
2009 Spain’s treasurer Luis
Barcenas resigned from his job after being indicted in a scheme of
kickbacks and illegal payments to other Popular Party politicians.
In 2013 Swiss authorities informed the Spanish judiciary that
Barcenas had amassed as much as 22 million euros in Swiss bank
(SSFC, 1/20/13, p.A5)
2010 Jan 1, Spain took over the
presidency of the EU, with PM Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero promising
to work to end the continent's economic crisis.
2010 Jan 9, Four suspected
members of the Basque separatist group ETA were arrested in Portugal
and France, one driving a van loaded with explosives near a police
barracks. two police officers stopped the van in Spain when their
suspicions were raised by its French license plates. The driver of
the van then pushed passed the police and proceeded to flee the
scene driving off in their patrol car which he stole. The police
alerted their Portuguese counterparts who rapidly arrested the man
and a woman, who had been following the van in a presumed getaway
vehicle with French plates.
2010 Jan 18, A Spanish Foreign
Ministry official said the country will take in two inmates from the
US prison at Guantanamo Bay.
2010 Jan 28, Spanish police
arrested two suspected members of Basque separatist group ETA in
northern Spain and discovered a hidden cache containing explosives
and bomb-making equipment.
2010 Jan 28, In Spain
prosecutors say charges have been filed against Mohamed Benbrahim, a
Muslim imam, for threatening a woman in Cunit, Catalonia, who
refused to wear an Islamic headscarf.
2010 Feb 6, Spanish matador
Jairo Miguel Sanchez Alonso (16) killed six bulls in one afternoon,
pulling off a feat normally attempted only by seasoned veterans and
winning trophies for his skill, ears from animals he had just slain.
2010 Feb 11, In Spain Roberto
Florez Garcia (44), a former Spanish intelligence officer, was
convicted of trying to sell secrets to Russia and imprisoned for 12
years. Garcia worked at Spain's intelligence headquarters from 1991
to 2004, when he quit. He was arrested on the Canary island of
Tenerife in 2007 and went on trial in January.
2010 Feb 15, Spain said it is
willing to take in five inmates from the US prison in Guantanamo
Bay, not just the two it had announced last month.
2010 Feb 15, In Spain, at the
Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Apple announced its new Windows
Phone 7 software. Nokia, the world's biggest maker of mobile
handsets, said it would merge its Linux Maemo software platform,
used in its flagship N900 phone, with Intel's Moblin, which is also
based on Linux open-sourced software, to create a new platform,
MeeGo. The software deal was set to boost Intel's chances of getting
its chips into the cellphones of the Finnish company, which controls
around 40% of the global phone market.
(Reuters, 2/15/10)(SFC, 2/16/10, p.D1)
2010 Feb 19, Pope Benedict XVI
approved sainthood for Mother Mary MacKillop (1842-1909), making the
woman known for her work among the needy Australia's first saint.
Sainthood was also approved for Stanislaw Soltys, a 15th-century
Polish priest; Italian nuns Giulia Salzano and Battista Varano;
Spanish nun Candida Maria de Jesus Cipitria y Barriola and a
Canadian brother, Andre Bessette (d.1937). The formal canonization
will take place Oct. 17 in Rome.
2010 Feb 22, In Spain Hokman
Joma tried to hit Turkey’s PM Erdogan with a shoe as the Turkish
leader got into a car during a visit to the southern city of
Seville. Hokman shouted "Long live Kurdistan" in Spanish before
being arrested. In June the Syrian Kurd was sentenced to three years
in jail in Spain.
2010 Feb 24, The US got help
from Europe in its troubled drive to shut down Guantanamo Bay, as
Spain accepted a former inmate from the prison for terror suspects
and the tiny Balkan nation of Albania took in three more.
2010 Feb 28, The leader of the
armed Basque group ETA was arrested in France, in another setback
for the separatists, who have seen five of their commanders taken
into custody in the last two years. Eta chief Ibon Gogeascoechea and
two other suspected separatists, Jose Ayestaran and Beinat
Aginagalde, were arrested in a joint French-Spanish police operation
in the village of Cahan, France.
(AP, 2/28/10)(Econ, 3/6/10, p.69)
2010 Feb 28, A violent late
winter storm named Xynthia battered France, Spain, Portugal and
Germany with fierce rain and hurricane-strength winds. The storm
smashed sea walls and killed at least 62 people across western
(AP, 2/28/10)(AP, 3/1/10)(SFC, 3/2/10, p.A2)
2010 Mar 2, It was reported
that Spanish investigators, working with private computer-security
firms, have arrested the three alleged ringleaders of the so-called
Mariposa botnet, which appeared in December 2008 and grew into one
of the biggest weapons of cybercrime. The Mariposa botnet infected
almost 13 million computers across 190 countries. More arrests were
expected soon in other countries.
(AP, 3/2/10)(SSFC, 3/14/10, p.D1)
2010 Mar 3, Freak waves off the
coast of Spain smashed into the Louis Majesty, a Mediterranean
cruise ship, flooding cabins, breaking windows in a restaurant and
terrifying many travelers in an ordeal that claimed two lives.
2010 Mar 4, In Pakistan robbers
kidnapped Sahil Saeed, a five-year-old British boy, in the town of
Jhelum, about 100 km (65 miles) south of Islamabad, demanding a
ransom of 100,000 pounds, prompting his mother to make a tearful
plea for the return of her boy. In the northwest an overnight
gunbattle left 30 insurgents and one soldier dead in the Chamarkand
area of the Mohmand tribal region. Sahil Saeed was released on March
16. Spanish police arrested 3 suspects in the kidnapping in
Tarragona province. They were suspected of having traveled to
another European city to collect ransom money.
(AFP, 3/4/10)(SFC, 3/5/10, p.A2)(AFP,
2010 Mar 5, In Spain the
regions of Madrid, Valencia and southern Murcia said they will keep
bullfighting legal and give the sport cultural heritage protection.
(SFC, 3/6/10, p.A2)
2010 Mar 19, Spanish ministers
approved a wide-ranging 10-year reform plan designed to wean the
economy off its dependence on construction and create broader, more
sustainable growth as the country fights to climb out of recession.
2010 Mar 20, Spanish surgeons
completed the world’s most extensive full-face transplant. It was
the 11th known face transplant in the world. The 24-hour operation
provided a young farmer (30) a new nose, jaw and teeth.
(SFC, 4/24/10, p.A3)(http://tinyurl.com/2fqgwfm)
2010 Mar 21, In Spain the
Basque armed separatist movement ETA said it is ready to move
forward on the path of political change, but it stopped short of
renouncing violence as demanded by the Spanish government.
2010 Mar 23, Somali pirates
hijacked the Malta-flagged MV Frigia, a Turkish ship with 21 crew on
board. A 2nd hijacking, of the refrigerated MV Talca, took place off
the coast of Oman. Private security guards shot and killed a Somali
pirate during an attack on a merchant ship off the coast of East
Africa in what is believed to be the first such killing by armed
contractors. The guards were onboard the MV Almezaan when a pirate
group approached it twice. During the 2nd approach on the
Panamanian-flagged cargo ship, which is United Arab Emirates owned,
there was an exchange of fire between the guards and the pirates.
The Spanish warship Navarra intercepted two skiffs and a larger
vessel believed to be a pirate mothership. Spanish forces arrested
the six remaining pirates, took custody of the pirate's body and
sunk the larger boat. The 6 pirates were soon released after the
captain of the MV Almezaan said he could not identify the men
detained by the Spanish navy as the group of pirates who attacked
him. The Talca was freed on May 11 along with its 25 crew members 3
days after a ransom was paid. The Frigia was freed on July 29, 2010.
(AP, 3/23/10)(AP, 3/24/10)(SFC, 3/24/10,
p.A2)(AP, 3/25/10)(AP, 5/11/10)(AP, 7/29/10)
2010 Mar 31, In Spain flight
attendant Adriana Ricardo said attendants owed up to nine months'
wages by a grounded Spanish airline have posed nude for a calendar
to draw attention to their plight. Air Comet, run by the embattled
chairman of Spain's main employers' association CEOE, Gerardo
Ferran, filed for administration in December after a British court
impounded nine of its aircraft at the request of German bank HSH
2010 Apr 7, In Spain Baltasar
Garzon (54), the judge who became an international hero by going
after Augusto Pinochet and Osama bin Laden, was indicted for having
dared to investigate what is arguably Spain's own biggest unresolved
case: atrocities committed during and after its ruinous Civil War.
2010 Apr 16, In eastern Haiti 4
soldiers died in the fiery crash of a Spanish military helicopter in
the rugged mountains of the Fond Verrettes area.
2010 Apr 24, In Spain tens of
thousands of people marched through Madrid and other Spanish cities
in a boisterous show of support for Judge Baltasar Garzon, who has
been indicted on charges of abusing his authority by investigating
atrocities committed during the civil war and the early years of
Gen. Francisco Franco's dictatorship.
2010 May 4, Spain’s Interior
Ministry said Spain has taken in a second former inmate from the
Guantanamo Bay prison for terrorism suspects. Another Guantanamo
detainee was sent to Bulgaria. This left about 181 prisoners at
Guantanamo Bay prison.
(AP, 5/4/10)(SFC, 5/5/10, p.A2)
2010 May 6, Julio Alberto Poch
(57), a pilot who allegedly flew death flights for Argentina's
military dictatorship, was extradited from Spain. Spain acted on
Argentina's request, arresting him in front of his passengers and
family during a stop in Valencia on what was supposed to be his
final flight back to the Netherlands before retiring from Transavia.
2010 May 7, Spain’s central
bank said the country has scraped out of recession after six
quarters of economic shrinkage, becoming the last major world
economy to return to growth after the global financial crisis.
2010 May 8, Hundreds of flights
between Europe and North America were either delayed or canceled due
to the spreading cloud of volcanic ash stretching across much of the
northern Atlantic. Spain shut 19 northern airports including
Barcelona because of the cloud of ash.
(AP, 5/8/10)(Reuters, 5/8/10)
2010 May 11, Volcanic ash from
Iceland wound its way down to North Africa and curled over to
Turkey, forcing authorities to shut down Casablanca airport in
Morocco as well as airports in Spain and airspace over Turkey.
2010 May 12, Spain’s PM
Zapatero announced sweeping spending cuts totaling $19 billion that
included 5% pay cuts for civil servants and 15% cuts for government
(SFC, 5/13/10, p.A3)
2010 May 12, The European Union
set out plans to vet member state budgets before national
parliaments do in a power-grab that could trigger a divisive
referendum in Britain and provoked Swedish anger. Spain announced
big public sector wage cuts and market sentiment buoyed by positive
growth figures as several states shook off recession.
2010 May 14, In Spain Judge
Baltasar Garzon (54), the crusading judge who indicted Augusto
Pinochet and Osama bin Laden, was suspended for allegedly
overstepping his jurisdiction in a probe of one of Spain's biggest
cases, atrocities committed during and after the nation's ruinous
civil war. Human rights groups called Garzon's suspension a sad day
for the Spanish justice system.
2010 May 18, Martin Smith (45)
was flown back from Spain to Britain, the same day as the bodies of
his children were found dead in the coastal resort of Lloret de Mar,
Spain. His wife, Lianne Smith (43), was arrested on suspicion of the
murder of his two children Rebecca (5) and Daniel (11 months).
Lianne Smith was charged with murder on May 21.
(AFP, 5/19/10)(AP, 5/21/10)
2010 May 20, French police
arrested the leader of Basque separatist group ETA and his second in
command, calling it an important blow but not a death knell for the
2010 May 21, Spain convicted 3
members of Basque separatist group ETA of detonating a car bomb at
Madrid airport in 2006 that killed two Ecuadorians.
2010 May 22, Spanish railway
workers called for a one-day stoppage on May 28 in protest at
proposed changes in working conditions.
2010 May 27, In Spain emergency
measures to cut a bloated deficit passed by one vote in parliament,
saving the Socialist government from an embarrassing defeat and
suggesting the depth of resistance to the spreading austerity
measures aimed at halting Europe's government debt crisis.
2010 May 28, The Spanish city
of Lleida, population of 135,000, barred women from wearing
face-covering Islamic veils inside its municipal buildings.
2010 Jun 2, Pakistan and Spain
expressed their joint commitment to fight terrorism as they signed a
broad bilateral agreement aimed at enhancing cooperation on
security, trade and other issues.
2010 Jun 7, Spanish healthcare
company Grifols SA said it had acquired Talecris Biotherapeutics,
based in North Carolina, for euro2.8 billion ($3.4 billion).
2010 Jun 14, In Spain Barcelona
City Mayor Jordi Hereu announced a measure to bar the use of
face-covering Islamic veils in municipal buildings. He insisted it
was not specifically religious saying it is aimed at all dress that
impedes identification, and thus includes motorcycle helmets and ski
2010 Jun 16, Spain embarked on
shaking up its economy with labor market reforms designed to
encourage companies to hire, enacting long-awaited structural
changes as it struggles to reassure markets and investors who are
worried over its public finances and pushing Spanish borrowing costs
to new highs.
2010 Jun 23, In Spain 12 people
died and 14 others were injured when a passenger train slammed into
a group of young revelers who crossed a railway track instead of
using a crowded underground passageway at the Castelldefels Playa
station some 25 km (15 miles) south of Barcelona.
2010 Jun 24, The Police Service
of Northern Ireland arrested Fermin Vila Michelena (40), a Basque
separatist, in central Belfast. Michelena faced three Spanish arrest
warrants over a string of ETA attacks. A ministry statement accused
Michelena of membership in an ETA terror cell that committed four
car-bomb attacks in Spain in 2001.
2010 Jul 6, In Pamplona, Spain,
tens of thousands of Spaniards and foreigners jammed a historic city
plaza and sprayed each other with wine as a firecracker rocket
blasted off to launch the famed San Fermin bull-running festival.
The 9-day street drinking party got under way at midday with the
traditional shout from the city hall balcony of "Viva San Fermin!,"
followed seconds later by the firing of the firecracker known as the
2010 Jul 10, In Spain more than
a million people gathered in northeastern Barcelona to demand
greater regional autonomy for Catalonia and protest a recent court
ruling forbidding this prosperous region from calling itself a
2010 Jul 11, In South Africa
Spain beat Holland for soccer’s World Cup.
2010 Jul 13, Seven former
political prisoners from Cuba smiled and gave victory signs after
they and their families arrived in Madrid, the first of 52
dissidents the Cuban government has promised to free in a historic
2010 Jul 14, British Airways
and Iberia won the EU's regulatory approval to merge and to team up
with American Airlines to share more of their lucrative
2010 Jul 18, Spain said 9 more
Cuban political prisoners will fly this week to freedom in Madrid
along with around 50 of their relatives.
2010 Jul 19, San Francisco
welcomed Barcelona, Spain, as its newest sister city.
(SFC, 7/20/10, p.D1)
2010 Jul 20, Spain's Parliament
rejected a proposal to ban women from wearing in public places
Islamic veils that reveal only the eyes.
2010 Jul 21, Spain accepted a
third former inmate from the US prison for terrorism suspects at
Guantanamo Bay. The inmate was originally from Afghanistan.
2010 Jul 23, Seven out of 91
banks failed European stress tests, which were organized in hope of
reviving investor confidence in Europe's embattled banking sector.
German state-owned lender Hypo Real Estate, five regional savings
banks in Spain and ATEBank of Greece failed the test of whether they
could resist a new financial shock. All have been ordered to
recapitalize or take state aid.
2010 Jul 28, In Spain a
bullfighting ban, passed in Catalonia's parliament, provoking
passionate reactions throughout the country.
2010 Jul 29, A Spanish judge in
Madrid reissued arrest warrants for three US servicemen over the
death of a Spanish journalist killed by American tank fire in Iraq
on April 8, 2003.
2010 Aug 8, In Spain people
began complaining of jellyfish attacks. Over the next three days
some 700 people were stung at three beaches on the Costa Blanca near
Elche, where normally just a handful get stung daily.
2010 Aug 12, Demonstrators in
Morocco slapped a commercial blockade on Melilla, a Spanish enclave,
allowing in only some trucks in a dispute over alleged police
violence and racism against Moroccans entering the city. Besides a
bustling commercial flow, about 35,000 Moroccans cross daily into
Melilla, population 70,000, to work or shop.
2010 Aug 18, In Spain a bull
leapt into the packed grandstands of a bullring at the Tafalla arena
in the northern region of Navarra and ran amok, charging and
trampling spectators and leaving 40 people injured.
2010 Aug 23, Two Spanish aid
workers held by al Qaeda's North African wing were freed in Mali,
ending a kidnapping that lasted nearly nine months, the longest
period of captivity in the Sahara desert. Al Qaeda in the Islamic
Maghreb (AQIM) said it seized Albert Vilalta and Roque Pascual while
they were traveling through Mauritania with a relief aid convoy last
2010 Aug 25, In Afghanistan a
driver for the Spanish police contingent opened fire during a
training exercise, killing 2 Spanish officers and their interpreter
in what appeared to be the latest in a series of attacks by
infiltrators linked to the insurgency. 10 campaign workers were
kidnapped while traveling in the western province of Herat. 3 Afghan
civilians were killed by a homemade bomb in Kandahar's Arghandab
district. 2 Taliban commanders were killed in fighting with a joint
Afghan-Taliban force in Uruzgan province, along with 12 regular
insurgent fighters. In Badakhshan province Afghan army commandos
aided by US special forces discovered a major weapons cache in the
remote village of Nawci. Weapons found included 78 rockets with
launchers, 47 mortar rounds, more than 9,000 rounds of ammunition,
and 24 rocket-propelled grenades. All were destroyed.
(AP, 8/25/10)(AP, 8/26/10)(AP, 8/27/10)
2010 Aug 31, Spanish police
said that for the first time they have broken up a human-trafficking
gang that brought men to the country to work as prostitutes,
providing them with Viagra, cocaine and other stimulant drugs to be
available for sex with other men 24 hours a day. Authorities
arrested 14 people, mainly Brazilians, on suspicion of running the
organization and another 17 alleged prostitutes for being in Spain
2010 Sep 5, The Basque
separatist militant group ETA declared a cease-fire in a video
statement, suggesting it might turn to a political process in its
quest for an independent homeland.
2010 Sep 6, The Spanish
government rejected a new ceasefire announcement by the separatist
group ETA and ruled out negotiations on an independent Basque
homeland, saying the militants have been decimated by arrests and
are desperate to regroup and rearm.
2010 Sep 6, In southwestern
Spain a passenger train crashed into a heavy-duty dump truck,
killing two people and injuring eight others.
2010 Sep 9, Spain gave final
approval to labor market reforms designed to shake up a listless
economy and help slash a bloated deficit that has prompted
European-wide worries of another Greek-style debt crisis.
2010 Sep 10, In Spain 50 coal
miners 1,640 feet (500 meters) underground entered the ninth day of
a strike over unpaid wages and government aid.
2010 Sep 17, Spain approved a
request to ask that South Africa extradite former Rwandan army chief
Faustin Kayumba Nyamwasa, who is wanted on charges of genocide and
for the murder of four Spaniards in Rwanda in the 1990s. Nyamwasa
fled to South Africa in February after abandoning his post as
Rwanda's envoy to India. Four months later he was shot in the
stomach outside his home in an upmarket Johannesburg suburb.
2010 Sep 17, Cuba's Roman
Catholic Church revealed the names of four more political prisoners
to be released into exile in Spain, bringing to 36 the number freed
and sent off the island under an agreement with President Raul
2010 Sep 19, Spain’s armed
Basque separatist group ETA says it is willing to accept
international mediation to help solve its long-running conflict with
Spain's government. The statement came a day after the Spanish
newspaper El Pais released a video on its website believed to have
been filmed by ETA earlier this year as a training aid which shows a
hooded gunman practicing assassination techniques by shooting into a
2010 Sep 24, Spain's government
approved an "austere" budget for 2011 aimed at reassuring nervous
markets over its ability to rein in a massive public deficit and fix
its battered economy.
2010 Sep 26, In Spain the
Basque separatist group ETA said it is willing to declare a
permanent cease-fire, verified by international observers, in a bid
to settle the troubled region's long-running conflict with the
2010 Sep 27, Representatives of
45 nations and international bodies met in Madrid to consider plans
to strengthen an African Union peacekeeping force in war-torn
2010 Sep 28, Spanish police
arrested a US citizen of Algerian origin who is suspected of
financing al-Qaida's North African affiliate. Mohamed Omar Dehbi
(43) was arrested in the town of Esplugues de Llobregat, a Barcelona
suburb. On Sep 30 a Spanish judge ordered Dehbi’s release, citing
lack of evidence, but barred him from leaving Spain and ordered him
to check in with police daily. Dehbi was cleared of suspicion on
March 8, 2011.
(AP, 9/29/10)(AP, 9/30/10)(AP, 3/22/11)
2010 Sep 29, Anti-austerity
protests erupted across Europe. Greek doctors and railway employees
walked out, Spanish workers shut down trains and buses, and one man
even blocked the Irish parliament with a cement truck to decry the
country's enormous bank bailouts.
2010 Oct 1, Spanish energy
giant Repsol announced the sale of 40 percent of its Brazilian
affiliate to China's Sinopec for 7.1 billion dollars, securing
funding for the development of oil fields in Brazil.
2010 Oct 3, Spain's beleaguered
PM Zapatero suffered an embarrassing setback in a local election
race, and a poll showed his party trailing ever further behind the
opposition conservatives at the national level.
2010 Oct 6, American Airlines,
British Airways and Iberia launched their transatlantic joint
business, unveiling new routes and detailing benefits for customers
that include a shared frequent flyers program.
2010 Oct 17, Pope Benedict XVI
proclaimed Australia's first saint, canonizing Mary MacKillop
(1842-1909), a 19th-century nun. The Vatican also declared five
other saints in an open-air Mass attended by tens of thousands.
Brother Andre (1845-1937), a Canadian, Italian nuns Giulia Salzano
and Battista Camilla da Varano, and Spanish nun Candida Maria de
Jesus Cipitria y Barriola were also canonized.
2010 Oct 20, Spain enacted a
tough new anti-smoking law, eliminating its status as Western
Europe's last country where lighting up in indoor public places is
2010 Nov 6, In Spain Pope
Benedict XVI blasted the "aggressive" anti-church sentiment he said
was flourishing in Spain as he sought to rekindle the faith in a
once-staunchly Roman Catholic nation that is now among Europe's most
2010 Nov 7, In Spain Pope
Benedict XVI consecrated a world monument to family, the Sagrada
Familia church, but faced a gay kiss-in protest before he attacked
abortion and defended male-female marriage.
2010 Nov 13, In Spain thousands
of people demonstrated in Madrid against Morocco's recent crackdown
that has left at least 10 people dead in the former Spanish colony
of Western Sahara in northwestern Africa.
2010 Nov 16, The UN Education,
Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) recognized everything
from the growing of corn, beans and chilies to Mexican dishes
prepared with grinding stones and mortars as an ancient process
worth safeguarding in the face of encroaching global influences.
France's multi-course gastronomic meal, Flamenco in Spain and
carpet-weaving in Azerbaijan also made the list.
2010 Nov 23, A Spanish judge
ordered Carlos Vielmann, a former Guatemalan interior minister, be
freed because authorities in the Central American country failed to
request his extradition on charges he ordered the extra-judicial
execution of seven inmates. He resigned in 2007 after allegations in
one of those cases became known.
2010 Nov 26, Spain’s PM Jose
Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said there was no chance Spain would seek a
2010 Nov 28, Spain's Socialist
government, battered by fears of an Irish-style rescue of its
troubled economy, braced for a new blow as voters went to the polls
in regional elections in Catalonia. The pro-business Convergence and
Union (CIU) nationalists routed the ruling Socialists. The CIU won
62 of the 135 seats in the Catalan parliament.
(AFP, 11/28/10)(Econ, 12/4/10, p.65)
2010 Nov 29, Investors fled
Spanish debt, pushing 10-year bond rates to an eight-year high, as
Ireland's 85-billion-euro rescue failed to stop fears the crisis may
2010 Nov 30, Investors sold off
government bonds from Spain, Portugal and Italy amid worries that
Europe's debt crisis has not been contained by Ireland's bailout but
will force more expensive rescue efforts.
2010 Dec 1, Spain said it will
sell off a third of its national lottery business, partially
privatize airports and cut both a key jobless benefit and taxes for
small companies in an unexpected move to soothe market fears about
2010 Dec 1, Spain’s Interior
Ministry said police over the last 24 hours have arrested seven
people in Spain and three in Thailand in an international operation
against a group suspected of forging passports for an
al-Qaida-linked Islamic terrorist group.
2010 Dec 2, Spanish police and
media said hooded thieves have stolen a van containing some 20
pieces of art reportedly including works by Picasso, Colombian
artist Fernando Botero and Spanish sculptor Eduardo Chillida. The
art was valued at least €5 million ($6.6 million).
2010 Dec 3, The Spanish
government approved new austerity measures and a limited economic
stimulus package to ease investor fears about its debt, and insisted
again it was taking strong steps to right its ailing economy.
2010 Dec 3, In Spain a sickout
by air traffic controllers created travel chaos. Spain’s military
assumed control and the government threatened the controllers with
jail terms in an unprecedented emergency order to get planes back in
the skies and clear chaotic airports clogged with irate travelers.
(AP, 12/4/10)(SFC, 12/4/10, p.A2)
2010 Dec 15, In Spain a man
walked into a bar in the town of Olot and shot two men dead with a
shotgun. Minutes later, he went to a bank and killed two staff
members. The man had a mortgage at the bank for an apartment that
was going to be seized for nonpayment.
2010 Dec 18, In Spain tens of
thousands of workers staged strikes in 40 cities to protest state
plans to up the retirement age to slash public deficit.
2010 Dec 22, Spain's "El
Gordo", one of the world's biggest lotteries, gave out 2.3 billion
euros (1.9 billion British pounds) in Christmas prizes with
Spaniards spending almost the same as last year on tickets.
2010 Dec 29, Spain's government
formally launched the privatization of air traffic control in 13
airports, just weeks after clamping down on a wildcat strike by
2010 Dec 30, A Spanish court
convicted four Civil Guard police officers of torturing members of
the armed Basque group ETA who were arrested for bombing Madrid's
airport in 2006. The officers were found guilty of beating and
threatening Mattin Sarasola and Igor Portu after they were taken
into custody in 2008.
2011 Jan 2, Four Argentines
were arrested in Spain for allegedly transporting almost a ton of
cocaine in a private plane. They included Gustavo and Eduardo Julia,
sons of the late former head of the Air Force Jose Julia, and Gaston
Miret, son of Jose Miret, the former Air Force brigadier who was
secretary of planning during Argentina's 1976-1983 dictatorship. The
cocaine was almost pure with a value of more than 30 million euros
(about $39 million).
2011 Jan 6, Spain's second most
important lottery dished out euro840 million ($1.1 billion) in new
year joy across a country struggling to emerge from recession, with
the top prize tickets being sold in a working class area of Madrid.
2011 Jan 8, In Spain tens of
thousands of people marched in the Basque region to protest the
government policy of shipping separatist prisoners convicted of
terror to jails far from their homes.
2011 Jan 10, The militant
Basque separatist group ETA declared a permanent cease-fire in what
it called a firm step toward ending its bloody decades-long
independence fight, but Spain's government quickly dismissed the
announcement and demanded ETA disband outright.
2011 Jan 11, Police in Spain
and France arrested two suspected members of ETA, suggesting the
government in Madrid will keep up pressure on the violent Basque
separatist group despite the latter's declaration of a permanent
2011 Jan 18, A court in the
northeastern Spanish region of Catalonia suspended a ban by the city
of Lleida on face-covering Islamic veils in municipal buildings. The
ban was suspended while the court studies an appeal lodged by a
Muslim association. Only about 3 percent of Lleida's population is
Muslim and only a handful of women actually wear body-covering
burqas or face-covering niqab garments.
2011 Jan 18, Spanish police
said they have arrested 25 people, including Spaniards and
Colombians, and dismantled what they claim is the biggest and most
sophisticated cocaine laboratory known to date in Europe. The
operation began Dec. 7 and followed two years of investigations.
2011 Jan 21, The Spanish
government said it is drawing up a new plan to restructure the
country's regional savings banks, the weak link in its banking
system and a major cause of concern over the public finances.
2011 Jan 27, Spain arrested
Malik Imtanan Sarwar (30), Pakistani man, in Barcelona. Sarwar was
said to be linked to a cell that forged passports for
al-Qaida-linked groups. Police had been looking for him since seven
members of the cell were arrested in Spain in December and three
more in Thailand.
2011 Jan 28, Spain's Cabinet
approved a plan to raise the retirement age by two years to 67 for
most workers, a key structural reform aimed at reassuring markets
that are uneasy over the country's finances.
2011 Jan 31, A major Spanish
savings bank born from a merger of seven institutions, Banco
Financiero y de Ahorros, announced plans to list on the market to
tap private capital.
2011 Feb 2, Spain’s PM Zapatero
signed a solemn “social pact” with unions and employers, covering
pensions, collective bargaining and more.
(Econ, 2/5/11, p.62)
2011 Feb 5, In Spain several
hundred Basque separatists held small street rallies, hung posters
and painted political graffiti on walls throughout the troubled
northern region to support a new political party to be launched next
2011 Feb 6, Rock guitarist Gary
Moore (58), a former member of influential Irish band Thin Lizzy,
was found dead at a hotel on Spain's Costa del Sol. Thin Lizzy had
global hits in the 1970s with songs like "The Boys are Back in Town"
and "Whiskey in the Jar." Frontman Phil Lynott died in 1986, but
with a different lineup the band continues to tour today.
2011 Feb 7, In Spain Basque
separatists launched Sortu (“Create”) a new political party they say
rejects violence by the armed group ETA, in an unprecedented step
designed to move the troubled region toward peace.
(AP, 2/7/11)(Econ, 2/26/11, p.56)
2011 Feb 21, British detectives
named the country's 10 most wanted fugitives who have bolted to the
"Costa del Crime", fleeing the urban ganglands for the Spanish
2011 Feb 24, In Spain a
powerful explosion at a military academy in Hoyo de Manzares killed
five soldiers and wounded three when a mine de-activation training
drill went awry.
2011 Feb 25, Spain said it will
lower highway speed limits, cut train ticket prices and use more
biofuel under an emergency energy-saving initiative because of
soaring oil prices brought on by the unrest in Libya.
2011 Feb 26, In Spain Austin
Bice (22), a San Diego State University exchange student, was last
seen outside the Riviera concert venue and discotheque in Madrid.
Bice’s body was pulled out of the Manzanares River in western Madrid
on March 8. An autopsy report on his body suggested an accidental
(AP, 3/6/11)(AP, 3/8/11)(AP, 5/10/11)
2011 Feb 28, Spanish nuns in
Zaragoza first reported €1.5 million ($2 million) were stolen, then
lowered the figure to €400,000 ($556,000). Plastic bags stuffed with
cash were stolen from a convent, whose cloistered nuns include one
who is a well-paid artist. Sister Isabel is well-known in Spanish
art circles for realist-style portraits and still-life paintings.
Police later said a judge will probe the possibility of tax evasion.
2011 Mar 1, Spain announced it
had narrowly beaten its target for slashing the public deficit in
2010, critical to the eurozone's fourth largest economy regaining
confidence in world financial markets.
2011 Mar 1, Spanish police
arrested four suspected members of the armed Basque separatist group
ETA they believe may have been behind several attacks in recent
2011 Mar 7, Spanish drivers
slowed down under a new speed limit designed to reduce energy use,
angering some motorists but pleasing others who say every euro saved
helps a nation slammed by Libya's oil chaos and Europe's financial
2011 Mar 10, In France the
suspected leader of the Basque separatist group ETA's armed cells
and three other alleged members of the organization were arrested in
Willencourt in northern Pas-de-Calais region. They included
Alejandro Zobaran Arriola (29), who an Interior Ministry statement
described as the head of ETA's "military apparatus." Another was the
alleged logistics chief, Mikel Oroz Torrea (31).
2011 Mar 19, In Spain six
firefighters died when their helicopter crashed in a remote region
in the northeastern province of Aragon as they flew to try and put
out a wildfire. A seventh crew member survived the accident.
2011 Mar 22, Spain's Parliament
overwhelmingly approved the prime minister's decision to take part
in the US-led coalition enforcing a no-fly zone over Libya.
2011 Mar 31, Britain's Prince
Charles met with Spanish PM Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero for talks
centering on the environment and sustainable development.
2011 Apr 1, A Spanish court
issued an international arrest warrant seeking the extradition of
Jorge Sosa Orantes (53), a former Guatemalan soldier for his alleged
part in the massacre in the village of Dos Erres in 1982 in which
more than 100 people died. Sosa has been in custody in Canada since
January on US charges of lying about his role in Guatemala's war
when he applied for American citizenship in 2008.
2011 Apr 2, In Spain tens of
thousands of people demonstrated in the troubled Basque region,
calling for the government to legalize a new pro-independence party
that says it rejects violence by armed separatist group ETA.
2011 Apr 7, Spain said around
30 former Cuban political prisoners and 200 relatives will be
brought to Madrid, the largest group yet to arrive since the two
countries agreed to the transfers.
2011 Apr 8, A total of 37 Cuban
ex-political prisoners and more than 200 relatives arrived in Madrid
in the largest and last such exodus since Spain started accepting
dissidents last summer.
2011 Apr 10, Police in central
France arrested a man and a woman allegedly linked to the Basque
separatist group ETA following a pair of weekend shooting incidents
against officers that injured at least one.
2011 Apr 14, Spanish telecoms
giant Telefonica said it plans to cut its workforce in Spain by
about 20 percent, or some 6,000 people, over the next three years as
a cost-cutting measure.
2011 Apr 16, Spain’s labor
minister warned in a published interview that the number of
unemployed could reach a record of more than five million. Spain
already had the highest jobless rate among developed countries.
2011 Apr 18, Spain raised 4.66
billion euros in short-term debt but had to pay more than previously
as Portugal's bailout talks sparked fresh fears over Madrid's
ability to stabilize its own public finances.
2011 Apr 18, Spanish police
arrested Sicilian mafia fugitive Claudio Adriano Giusto (43) after
13 years on the run for murder and robbery. Giusto was accused of
shooting and killing Giuseppe Magaddino with a 7.65 mm firearm and
then taking his wallet in Italy in March 1998.
2011 Apr 20, In Spain the
Madrid Superior Court of Justice upheld a ban barring atheists from
holding a march on Holy Thursday, saying that would be offensive to
Spanish Catholics who mark Easter with processions of their own. The
ban was imposed last week by the Interior Ministry office for the
2011 May 6, Spanish police
searched for 22 African migrants missing in the Mediterranean Sea
after a packed boat they were traveling in nearly sank.
2011 May 7, Spanish-born Seve
Ballesteros (b.1957), Europe’s greatest golfer, died of brain
2011 May 11, In Spain a pair of
temblors, with magnitudes of 4.4 and 5.2, killed nine people and
caused extensive damage in Lorca.
2011 May 13, Spanish regional
government authorities said Deyan Valentinov, a homeless Bulgarian
man, beheaded Jennifer Mills-Westley (60), a British grandmother of
five, in a supermarket on the Spanish resort island of Tenerife in
the Canary Islands. The suspect was detained by security guards.
(AP, 5/13/11)(AP, 5/14/11)
2011 May 17, Spanish wind
turbine giant Gamesa said it had won a $2 billion (1.4-billion-euro)
deal to supply turbines in India, touting it as one of the largest
contracts of its kind in the world.
2011 May 19, Thousands of
Spaniards defied a ban on a pre-election demonstration and mounted a
protest camp in the heart of Madrid to express anger at political
parties and the country's handling of the economic crisis. Spain is
battling to emerge from nearly two years of recession that has left
it with a swollen deficit and a staggering 21.3% unemployment rate.
2011 May 21, Spanish protesters
furious over soaring unemployment remained camped in a Madrid square
after all-night festivities in defiance of a 48-hour ban ahead of
2011 May 22, Spain held
regional and municipal elections as protesters, fuming over mass
unemployment, defied a ban on their swelling movement. The ruling
Socialists suffered a crushing defeat to the conservative opposition
(AFP, 5/22/11)(SFC, 5/23/11, p.A4)
2011 May 27, Spanish police
fired rubber bullets and swung truncheons to disperse anti-crisis
protesters in a Barcelona square as cleaning crews cleared their
2011 May 30, A Spanish judge
indicted 20 Salvadorans for the November 16, 1989, slaying of six
Jesuit priests and two other people during the Central American
country's civil war.
2011 May 30, Russia banned the
import of all vegetables from Germany and Spain and warned the
sanction could soon be applied to the rest of Europe because of the
deadly E. coli bacteria scare. German officials suspect the deadly
strain, which has already killed 12 people, may have come from
organic cucumbers imported from Spain.
2011 May 31, The death from a
food-borne bacterial outbreak in Germany rose to 16 with nearly 400
people suffering severe symptoms. Scientists were unsure of which
produce and which country was responsible for the unusual E. coli
(SFC, 6/1/11, p.A2)
2011 Jun 2, Spain's prime
minister hit out at the European Commission and Germany for singling
out the country's produce as a possible source of a deadly bacterial
outbreak in Europe, and said the government would demand
explanations and reparations. The World Health Organization said the
E. coli bacteria responsible for a mysterious outbreak that has left
18 people dead and sickened hundreds is a new strain that has never
been seen before. The illness had now spread to at least 10 European
countries and fanned uncertainty about eating tomatoes, cucumbers
2011 Jun 10, The Spanish
government announced it had arrested three men who were suspected of
being part of the hacker group known as Anonymous; the men, called
“hacktivists,” were charged with organizing and carrying out the
hacking of the websites of Sony Corporation, as well as several
2011 Jun 16, Spain’s National
Police arrested Hussein Salem, an Egyptian associate of ousted
president Hosni Mubarak, in Mallorca. Police the next day said he
had obtained money illegally in Egypt and sent it to accounts in
Spain held by his family. Spain froze euro33 million ($47 million)
in accounts held by Salem, who is also wanted back home.
2011 Jun 17, Spain’s attorney
general said prosecutors are investigating 849 cases of newborn
children stolen from their mothers and sold to other families for
2011 Jun 19, Spanish protesters
of all stripes marched in Madrid to drive home their anger over high
unemployment, bleak economic prospects and politicians they see as
2011 Jun 24, Spain said it will
slash the government spending limit by 3.8 percent in 2012 as it
fights to lower the public deficit.
2011 Jul 6, French police
arrested ETA suspect Daniel Derguy on terrorism charges in Cahors.
2011 Jul 7, British officers
arrested Eneko Gogeaskoetxea Arronategui (44), a suspected Basque
separatist, in connection with a 1997 attempted assassination of
Spain's King Juan Carlos. The arrest came a day after the arrest of
ETA suspect Daniel Derguy on terrorism charges in Cahors, France.
2011 Jul 6, In Santiago de
Compostela, Spain, the 12th century Calixtinus Codex was reported
missing from a strongbox in the cathedral's archive room. The codex
is considered the first guide for people making the ancient
Christian pilgrimage known as the Camino de Santiago, the Spanish
name for the Way of St. James. There were no signs of a break-in.
Police believed it was taken the previous week. On Feb 18, 2015, a
court convicted Jose Manuel Fernandez Castineiras, a former
cathedral electrician, of theft and money laundering and sentenced
him to ten years in prison.
(AP, 7/8/11)(AP, 2/18/15)
2011 Jul 11, Spanish officials
said a surgical team in Valencia, led by Dr. Pedro Cavada, has
carried out the world’s first double leg transplant.
(SFC, 7/12/11, p.A2)
2011 Jul 18, Spain’s Transport
Minister Jose Blanco confirmed that a Spanish consortium has won a
contract worth 7.0 billion euros ($10 billion) to build a high-speed
rail network linking Medina, Jeddah and the Muslim pilgrimage site
of Mecca in Saudi Arabia.
2011 Jul 23, In Spain several
hundred people, angry about their country’s economic crises,
protested on the outskirts of Madrid following a month-long march
from their hometowns.
(SSFC, 7/24/11, p.A4)
2011 Aug 2, In Spain a man (74)
was charged and killed by the young bull during an early morning
bull-run in the northern town of Lodosa.
2011 Aug 4, In Spain clashes
between demonstrators, angry over the government’s austerity
program, and police left 7 officers and 13 protesters injured.
(SSFC, 8/7/11, p.A5)
2011 Aug 6, In Spain thousands
of demonstrators angry over the government’s austerity program
occupied a central Madrid plaza.
(SSFC, 8/7/11, p.A5)
2011 Aug 13, Fashion designer
Jesus del Pozo (65), one of Spain's most influential style
modernizers, died. Del Pozo opened his first outlet in Madrid in
1974, making him a contemporary of Antonio Miro and Adolfo
Dominguez. His first collection was unveiled in 1976.
2011 Aug 15, In Spain 3
children were found dead at a home for disabled kids in Boecillo and
a woman (55) who worked there was taken into custody. The children
were severely disabled and had very limited mobility.
2011 Aug 17, In Spain an
anti-pope demonstration was held in Madrid. Police had arrested
Mexican chemistry student Jose Perez Bautista (24) a day earlier
because of threats he made on the Internet against anti-pope
demonstrators due to take part in the rally. Bautista was released
on Aug 18 but remained under investigation.
2011 Aug 18, Spanish
authorities arrested Aeromexico co-pilot Ruben Garcia Garcia for
attempting to smuggle 93 pounds of cocaine into the European
2011 Aug 18, Pope Benedict XVI
arrived in Spain for a nearly 4-day visit to celebrate World Youth
(SFC, 8/18/11, p.A2)
2011 Aug 19, In Spain Pope
Benedict XVI lamented what he called modern society's "amnesia"
about God as he traveled to a famed Spanish monastery on the second
day of his four-day visit for the church's world youth festival.
2011 Aug 20, In Spain Pope
Benedict XVI said he would confer one of the Catholic Church's
highest honors on St. John of Avila, an influential 16th-century
Spanish saint, making a surprise announcement during a Mass at the
church's world youth festival. Pope John Paul II added St. Therese
of Lisieux to the list in 1997, the last time one was proclaimed,
making her #33.
2011 Aug 21, In Spain Pope
Benedict XVI urged more than 1.5 million young people to become
missionaries for the faith as he concluded a glitch-marred church
youth festival and announced that the next edition will be in Rio de
Janeiro in 2013.
2011 Aug 31, In Spain tens of
thousands of people pelted each other with 120 tons of ripe tomatoes
in an annual battle that left the eastern town of Bunol awash in red
pulp. The event has its roots in a food fight between childhood
friends back in 1945.
2011 Sep 25, Spain's powerful
northeastern region of Catalonia bid farewell to the country's
emblematic tradition of bullfighting with a final bash at the
Barcelona bullring. A regional ban on the bloody pastime takes
effect Jan. 1, 2012.
2011 Aug, Belgium, France,
Italy and Spain introduced bans to prevent the short selling of
financial stocks. The EU banned naked shorting of shares in October,
effective in Nov, 2012.
(Econ, 10/22/11, p.88)
2011 Sep 26, Spain's PM
Zapatero dissolved Parliament, setting the stage for a Nov. 20
general election that is likely to focus on an economy saddled with
21 percent unemployment, anemic growth and gloomy future prospects.
2011 Sep 27, Spanish police
arrested five Algerians suspected of helping finance an
al-Qaida-linked terror group in North Africa. On Oct 1 they were
freed by a judge who said there was no significant evidence against
(AP, 9/27/11)(AP, 10/2/11)
2011 Sep 29, In Spain a gunman
(34) walked into St. Mary's Church in a middle-class neighborhood of
Madrid as about 40 people were waiting for Mass to start. He shot a
pregnant woman (36) in the head at point-blank range, then proceeded
down the center aisle and shot a woman (52) in the chest, then
walked a bit further, knelt down in front of the altar and shot
himself dead. The 2nd victim survived. Paramedics cut the baby from
the mother and revived him following cardio-respiratory arrest. The
victims were apparently shot at random. The infant died on Oct 3.
(AP, 9/30/11)(AP, 10/4/11)
2011 Sep 29, In Sweden the
winners of Right Livelihood Awards, sometimes referred to as the
alternative Nobel prizes, were announced. Human rights activist
Jacqueline Moudeina of Chad; Spanish-based nonprofit GRAIN; and
American midwifery educator Ina May Gaskin will share the
euro150,000 ($205,000) cash award. Chinese solar power pioneer Huang
Ming received an honorary award for developing "cutting-edge
2011 Sep 30, Spain took over
savings banks (cajas) valuing their equity at close to zero.
(Econ, 10/8/11, p.88)
2011 Oct 1, In Spain the Gara
newspaper's website said two unidentified spokesmen told it that
"Ekin members have ended their endeavors as an organization." Ekin,
a civic support organization for the Basque separatist group ETA,
was formed in 1999 with the aim of "impelling independence,
nation-building and socialism at street level."
2011 Oct 5, The Spanish Duchess
of Alba (85), considered the world's most title-laden noble, married
Alfonso Diez, a civil servant 25 years her junior, shrugging off her
children's qualms and celebrating by kicking off her shoes and
dancing flamenco. Estimates of her wealth ranged from euro600
million ($800 million) to euro3.5 billion ($4.7 billion).
2011 Oct 5, US defense
officials said the Obama administration has agreed to base Aegis
Cruisers on Spain's coast, as part of the anti-ballistic missile
defense system to protect Europe against a potential Iranian nuclear
2011 Oct 7, Spain's Queen
Sophia started a rare royal visit to Haiti to see some of the aid
projects that her country has helped finance in the
2011 Oct 7, Spanish bullfighter
Juan Jose Padilla (39) was pinned to the ground and gored by a bull
in Zaragoza. He is likely to suffer facial paralysis and lose the
sight in one eye after a terrifying goring.
2011 Oct 20, ETA announced it
was ceasing its 43-year-long bloody campaign for an independent
Basque state in territory straddling northern Spain and southwest
France. But the group stopped short of declaring defeat and called
on Spain and France to open talks on the conflict.
2011 Oct 23, In Algeria gunmen
kidnapped three aid workers, two Spaniards and an Italian, from the
Rabuni refugee camp near Tindouf, injuring one of the hostages and a
local guard in the late night attack. Security sources in Nouakchott
and Bamako later said those responsible belonged to a Sahrawi wing
of the north African Al-Qaeda branch, Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Magreb
(AQIM). The group later demanded 30 million euros ($39 million) to
free the 3 aid workers held in northern Mali. Spaniards Enric
Gonyalons and Ainhoa Fernandez del Rincon and Italian Rossella Urru
were released on July 18, 2012, in exchange for three Islamists. The
Islamist rebel group that freed them claimed that they also received
a ransom of €15 million ($18.4 million).
(AP, 10/23/11)(AFP, 12/5/11)(AFP, 3/3/12)(AP,
2011 Oct 28, In Spain a man in
Valencia went on a stabbing rampage at his apartment building,
killing three people and seriously injuring at least two others. The
man was arrested, but a motive for the attack was not given.
2011 Nov 4, British Airways
owner IAG said it has agreed to buy Lufthansa's UK unit bmi in a bid
to squeeze more growth from its capacity constrained Heathrow hub
and expand services to emerging markets in Asia and Latin America.
2011 Nov 20, Spain held a
national election. It was expected to become the third eurozone
country in as many weeks to throw out its governing party in an
attempt to dig itself out of an economic crisis. Opposition leader
Mariano Rajoy (56) and his conservative Popular Party were expected
to win control of Parliament in a landslide. The Popular Party won
186 seats in the 350-seats lower chamber of Parliament, compared
with 154 in the last legislature. The Socialists plummeted from 169
seats to 110, their worst performance ever.
(AP, 11/20/11)(AP, 11/21/11)
2011 Nov 21, Spain's
conservative Popular Party began tackling the gigantic task of
lifting the country out of its worst economic crisis in decades,
following an overwhelming and historic victory in the general
2011 Dec 2, Spanish police said
they have arrested L. Morris (66), a British man, suspected of
raping his step-daughter when she was nine years old and years later
abusing her daughter as well. He had moved to Spain from Kent where
the alleged rapes took place.
2011 Dec 14, Amnesty
International accused Spanish authorities of using racial and ethnic
profiling, with police singling out people who are not white in
order to meet quotas.
2011 Dec 18, Spanish airline
Iberia cancelled a third of its flights because of a strike by
pilots fearing job losses when company planes are diverted for a
planned new budget carrier.
(SFC, 12/18/11, p.A2)
2011 Dec 28, Spain's
scandal-hit royals revealed their detailed income for the first
time, showing King Juan Carlos received a salary plus expenses of
€292,752 ($382,600) in 2011.
2011 Dec 30, Spain’s new PM
Mariano Rajoy announced tax rises on income, savings and property.
The top tax rate will jump 7 points to 52%.
(Econ, 1/7/12, p.44)
2011 Spain ranked 133rd in the
World Bank’s ranking of how easy it is to start a business.
(Econ, 11/12/11, SR p.6)
2012 Jan 3, In Spain Ibrahima
Dyey (32) of Senegal was shot in the San Marti neighborhood of
Barcelona. Dyey’s death led to rioting and the arrest of four
members of a Roma family. One of the arrested men had asked a group
of youths to stop playing football on the street and after they
refused he opened fire on them with a gun, striking Dyey in the
2012 Jan 7, In Spain tens of
thousands of protesters filled the streets of Bilbao to call for an
amnesty that would allow some 700 ETA prisoners to serve out the
remainder of their sentences in the Basque region.
(SSFC, 1/8/12, p.A6)
2012 Jan 7, In Spain Dartmouth
College student Crispin Scott was found dead in Barcelona. Police on
February 7 detained a suspect.
2012 Jan 12, El Salvador's
government said it has received a formal request from Spain for the
extradition of 13 former military officers accused in the 1989
slayings of six Jesuit priests and two other people. Two other
officers were in the United States.
2012 Jan 14, In Spain Jose Luis
Alvarez Enparantza (b.1927), one of the founders of Basque
separatist group ETA, died. His work "Leturiaren Egunkari Ezkutua"
is regarded as the first modern novel written in Basque.
2012 Jan 15, Spain’s Interior
Ministry said French police acting alongside Spanish counterparts
have arrested three men at a railway station in France on suspicion
of belonging to Basque separatist group ETA. They were identified as
Jon Echeverria Oyarbide (33), Ruben Rivero Campo, and Inigo Sancho
2012 Jan 15, In Spain Manuel
Fraga Iribarne (89), the founder Spain's ruling conservative party,
died. He was the last surviving minister from Gen. Francisco
Franco's right-wing regime.
2012 Jan 21, In eastern Spain a
flaming-horned bull trampled and fatally gored a man during a
festival in Navajas. Catalonia had legislation protecting flaming
bulls, despite a ban that took effect on Jan 1.
2012 Jan 26, In Spain Andrew
Robert Levene (41), an American man accused of killing a jewelry
store owner in the US and stealing $300,000 (euro228,000) in
diamonds before fleeing to Europe, was found hanged in his prison
cell in the Modelo prison in Barcelona.
2012 Jan 27, Fitch ratings
downgraded the debt of Belgium, Cyprus, Italy, Slovenia and Spain
even as European finance chiefs gathering in Davos sought to
reassure global business leaders that Europe is on track to solve
its debt crises.
(SFC, 1/27/12, p.A4)
2012 Jan 29, In Spain thousands
of protesters, including artists, politicians and union members,
marched in downtown Madrid in support of Baltasar Garzon, a judge
who is on trial for allegedly overstepping his jurisdiction by
probing atrocities stemming from Spain's civil war.
2012 Feb 9, Spanish judge
Baltasar Garzon (56), celebrated for pursuing international human
rights cases, was convicted of overstepping his jurisdiction in a
domestic corruption probe and barred from the bench for 11 years.
2012 Feb 9, Spanish police
arrested 3 members of the Serbian paramilitary group known as
"Arkan's Tigers" as well as belonging to Zemun Clan. They included
Vladimir Milisavljevic, who had been a fugitive for five years after
being convicted in absentia for the March 12, 2003, assassination of
Serbia’s PM Zoran Djindjic. Milisavljevic was convicted in 2007 and
sentenced in absentia in Serbia to 35 years for his involvement in
the assassination of Djindjic and to another 40 years for other
crimes. Luka Bojovic (39) and Sinisa Petric were also arrested.
Bojovic was wanted in connection with 20 murders in Serbia, the
Netherlands and Spain.
2012 Feb 10, Spain’s new
conservative government approved sweeping labor market reforms as
part of a drive to revive the economy and reduce the nearly 23%
(SFC, 2/11/12, p.A2)
2012 Feb 12, In Spain some ten
thousands people took to the streets of Madrid in support of
Baltasar Garzon, a judge who won global fame for taking on
international human rights cases, but has now been barred from the
bench for ordering jailhouse wiretaps.
2012 Feb 13, Spain's Supreme
Court threw out a case against recently barred magistrate Baltasar
Garzon in which he was suspected of improperly receiving money while
on sabbatical in New York in 2005-2006. The court cited a three-year
statute of limitations on bribery charges. Garzon awaited a verdict
in a third case for allegedly overstepping jurisdiction by launching
a 2008 probe of right-wing atrocities during and after the 1936-1939
Spanish civil war.
2012 Feb 16, The US returned
shipwreck treasure from the Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes, which
sank off the coast of Portugal in 1804, to Spain. Odyssey marine
Exploration of Tampa, Florida, salvaged treasure from the ship in
2007 at a cost of $2.6 million. Spain had agreed to pay $20 for each
coin found on the ship. Some 594,000 silver coins and a couple
hundred gold coins were found.
(SFC, 6/11/12, p.E1)
2012 Feb 19, In Spain hundreds
of thousands of protesters marched in 57 cities in a show of anger
over new labor reforms that make it easier for companies to fire
workers and pull out of collective bargaining agreements.
(SFC, 2/20/12, p.A2)
2012 Feb 25, In Spain Inaki
Urdangarin, the Duke of Palma and son-in-law of King Juan Carlos,
arrived at a courthouse on Palma de Mallorca island, to face
corruption charges. He was suspected of using his high-profile
status to win contracts from regional governments for a nonprofit
foundation he ran, then subcontract the work to companies he also
oversaw, sometimes charging the public ridiculously inflated prices
and stashing at least some of the income in overseas tax havens.
2012 Feb 27, In Spain Baltasar
Garzon (56), the embattled superstar judge known for taking on
high-profile international human rights cases, was acquitted on
charges of overstepping his jurisdiction by launching an
investigation into right-wing atrocities during and after the
1936-1939 Spanish Civil War.
2012 Mar 2, Leaders of 25 EU
countries signed a new treaty in Brussels designed to limit
government overspending. Spain’s PM Mariano Rajoy said he would miss
deficit targets this year to spare his country from austerity
(SFC, 3/3/12, p.A2)
2012 Mar 11, In Spain hundreds
of thousands of people across the country took part in
demonstrations called by trade unions to protest the government’s
tough new labor reforms.
(SFC, 3/12/12, p.A2)
2012 Mar 27, Spanish police
arrested a suspected member of al-Qaida, identified as M.H.A. M.H.A.
– born in Jordan with Saudi citizenship, who was key to the terror
group's Internet propaganda and recruiting operations.
2012 Mar 26, A Spanish court
dropped a rape probe against a Saudi prince who is one of the
world's richest people, saying his accuser's allegations are
inconsistent and do not stand up. The ruling cleared Prince Alwaleed
bin Talal (57) and was released today by a court in Palma in Spain's
Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean. The drugging and sexual
assault of a young Spanish model was alleged to have occurred aboard
a yacht moored at the island of Ibiza in the wee hours of Aug 12,
2012 Mar 29, Spain’s National
Court handed fines of about $1,170 to each of three members of the
Ardor de Estomago (Heartburn) rock band for insulting King Juan
(SFC, 3/30/12, p.A2)
2012 Apr 9, In Spain four
people died in a fire that destroyed a makeshift hut in which they
were living in the northeastern city of Barcelona. Spanish National
Radio cited police at the scene as saying they were Romanians.
2012 Apr 13, Spanish officials
warned Argentina that the country risks becoming "an international
pariah" if it follows through on its threats to nationalize
Spanish-owned energy company Repsol's majority stake in its South
American YPF unit. concern" YPF represents 42 percent of Repsol's
total reserves, estimated at 2.1 billion barrels of crude.
2012 Apr 13, Spain's King Juan
Carlos (74) was injured while on an expensive elephant hunting trip
in Botswana amid the nation's deep financial woes. The accident
required a hip replacement and led to scathing criticism amid the
nation's deep financial woes.
2012 Apr 16, Argentina’s
President Cristina Fernandez pushed forward a bill to renationalize
the country's largest oil company despite fierce criticism from
abroad and the risk of a major rift with Spain.
2012 Apr 18, Spain's King Juan
Carlos apologized for having gone elephant-hunting in Africa while
everyday people endure a severe economic crisis.
2012 Apr 20, The European Union
parliament condemned Argentina's move to seize control of the YPF
division of Spanish oil and gas giant Repsol and demanded that EU
takes action against Buenos Aires at the World Trade Organization.
2012 Apr 23, Ferrovial-owned
BAA said it had agreed to sell Edinburgh airport to Global
Infrastructure Partners (GIP) for 807 million pounds ($1.3 billion),
adding the Scottish hub to an investment portfolio that includes
London's Gatwick and City airports.
2012 Apr 29, In Spain tens of
thousands of people protested against education and health care cuts
as the country suffered its 2nd recession in three years.
(SFC, 4/30/12, p.A2)
2012 May 9, Spain’s government
nationalized Banco Financiero y de Ahorros (BFA), parent of Bankia,
the largest property lender in the country.
(Econ, 5/12/12, p.79)
2012 May 12, In Spain masses of
chanting "indignant" activists poured into the streets across the
country in a vast show of strength one year on from igniting a
global protest against economic injustice. The marches, held in 80
cities and towns across Spain, launched a four-day protest that will
end on May 15, the anniversary of the movement's birth -- dubbed
2012 May 18, Spanish company
Repsol said an exploratory oil well off the northern coast of Cuba
has proved a failure and will be capped and abandoned, a
disappointment for a cash-strapped nation hoping for an economic
2012 May 22, In Spain teachers
and students from every level of the education system went on strike
to protest wide-ranging government spending cuts.
2012 May 26, Spain's fourth
biggest lender, Bankia, prepared to sell stakes it holds in
companies to meet European competition rules after a state rescue
that has so far cost 23.5 billion euros ($29.40 billion). A day
earlier Bankia sought 19 billion euros ($24 billion) in bailout
money from the Spanish government. The loan will count as sovereign
(Econ, 6/16/12, p.27)(http://tinyurl.com/8xqxzmk)
2012 Jun 5, The Solar Impulse,
an experimental solar-powered plane, took off from Madrid en route
to Morocco for the 2nd leg of a bid to complete its first
2012 Jun 8, In Britain 6 men
were handed jail sentences for running a website, Confidential
Access, that earned millions of pounds by selling fake documents and
coaching fraudsters in how to conduct successful scams. Two
masterminds ran the site from villas in Alicante in Spain while
associates in Britain created fake documents including bank
statements, pay slips, driving licenses and bills.
2012 Jun 9, Euro zone finance
ministers agreed to lend Spain up to 100 billion euros ($125
billion) to help its battered banks.
(Reuters, 6/10/12)(SSFC, 6/10/12, p.A6)
2012 Jun 27, Spanish scientists
reported evidence that dinosaurs were warm-blooded, despite being
(SFC, 6/28/12, p.A1)
2012 Jul 10, Spanish coal
miners angered by huge cuts in subsidies converged on Madrid for
protest rallies after walking nearly three weeks under a blazing sun
from the pits where they eke out a living.
2012 Jul 11, Spanish riot
police fired rubber bullets at coal miners protesting in the streets
of Madrid over subsidy cuts they fear will jeopardize their meager
2012 Jul 13, Spanish civil
servants, some dressed in mourning, took to the streets to protest
the latest round of government austerity measures and their second
wage cut in as many years.
2012 Jul 17, Spain successfully
tapped bond market investors for €3.6 billion ($4.4 billion) in the
first debt auction since the government's latest package of spending
cuts and tax increases.
2012 Jul 19, In Spain tens of
thousands protested in 80 cities throughout the country against the
government’s latest austerity package.
(SFC, 7/20/12, p.A2)
2012 Jul 20, Finance ministers
from the 17 countries that use the euro unanimously approved the
terms for a bailout loan for Spanish banks of up to €100 billion
2012 Jul 22, In Spain a
vacationing French family of five jumped off a seaside cliff in a
desperate attempt to escape a raging wildfire in Portbou, with the
father and one of his children plummeting some 50 meters (165 feet)
to their deaths. Two other people were also killed by the weekend
fires in northeastern Spain.
2012 Jul 22, Cuban activist
Oswaldo Paya (60) died in a car crash in La Gavina. Fellow activist,
Harold Cepero Escalante, was also killed. Paya had spent decades
speaking out against the communist government of Fidel and Raul
Castro and became one of the most powerful voices of dissent against
their half-century rule. Cuba later charged Angel Carromero, a
Spanish citizen and the driver of the car, with homicide while
driving a vehicle on public roads. On Dec 14 Spain's Deputy PM
Soraya Saenz de Santamaria said that Carromero would be returning to
Spain to complete his 4-year sentence, but did not give an exact
(AP, 7/23/12)(AP, 7/31/12)(AP, 12/14/12)
2012 Jul 23, Spain's market
regulator says it has temporarily banned short-selling of shares on
its stock indexes owing to volatility in Spanish and European
markets. It noted that Italy took similar steps today.
2012 Aug 1, Spain‘s police
arrested three suspected members of al-Qaida (a Russian, a Russian
of Chechen descent, and a Turk), who had amassed explosives and may
have been plotting attacks in Spain or elsewhere in Europe. Two of
them had practiced flying light aircraft.
2012 Aug 8, Britain arrested
Spaniard Kemen Uranga Artola (43) in London suspected of being a
member of the Basque separatist group ETA. Media reports said Uranga
is suspected of the murder of a judge, Jose Maria Lidon, who was
killed by an ETA group in 2001.
2012 Aug 12, Spain’s regional
governments reported 10 wildfires raging across the country,
including fires on the Canary islands of La Gomera and Tenerife.
2012 Aug 13, In Spain 2
firefighters died over the last 24 hours from injuries sustained in
battling a wildfire in the eastern province of Alicante, while
hundreds were evacuated by boat to escape a fire raging on the
Canary Island of La Gomera.
2012 Aug 28, In Spain the
regional government of Catalonia said it needed a $6.3 billion
(Economist, 9/1/12, p.54)
2012 Aug 31, Spain’s FROB, a
bank rescue fund set up to help the deeply troubled financial
sector, said it will immediately inject financial aid into Bankia
after the troubled lender announced losses of €4.4 billion ($5.6
billion) in the first half of the year.
2012 Sep 4, Spain’s government
lifted a 6-year ban on televising live bullfights.
(SFC, 9/5/12, p.A2)
2012 Sep 4, Spanish police
evicted more than 80 illegal migrants that had occupied Isla de
Tierra, a tiny island off Africa's Mediterranean coast.
2012 Sep 6, The European
Central Bank unveiled a new bond-buying program that is largely
designed to keep a lid on Spain’s borrowing rates.
2012 Sep 11, In Spain some 1.5
million protesters flooded the streets of Barcelona to demand the
independence of the Catalonia region.
(SFC, 9/12/12, p.A2)
2012 Sep 18, Santiago Carrillo
(b.1915), former leader of Spain’s Communist Party (1960-1982), died
in Madrid. In 2014 Pauil Preston authored “The Last Stalinist: The
Life of Santiago Carrillo.”
2012 Sep 15, In Spain tens of
thousands of people from all over the country converged on Madrid to
hold a large anti-austerity demonstration.
2012 Sep 25, Spanish police
arrested 38 people and 64 people injured when officers clashed with
protesters demonstrating against austerity cutbacks and tax hikes.
Catalonia’s president said that his region will hold early elections
on Nov 25.
(AP, 9/26/12)(Economist, 9/29/12, p.16)
2012 Sep 26, In Madrid
thousands of angry protesters again swarmed as close as they could
get night to Parliament, watched by a heavy contingent of riot
police. There was no fresh violence. They demanded the release of
people detained the previous evening and new elections to oust PM
Mariano Rajoy and his conservative government, which has imposed
cutbacks and tax hikes, deepening the gloom in a country struggling
with recession and unemployment of nearly 25 percent.
2012 Sep 27, Spain outlined
plans to reduce government spending and raise taxes to convince
international lenders and financial markets it is on track to cut
deficits. Spain’s government warned it will stop a Catalonia
referendum on self-determination after the regional parliament voted
to stage such a referendum with a view of possibly seceding.
(AP, 9/27/12)(SFC, 9/28/12, p.A2)
2012 Sep 28, In Spain a tornado
swept through a fair ground in Gandia, Valencia state, knocking down
a Ferris wheel and injuring 35 people. Flooding in the same southern
region left 10 people dead.
2012 Oct 3, Spanish police
arrested a man on suspicion that he planned to imitate the 1999
Columbine school killings by planting bombs around a university
campus. Police seized 140 kilograms (308 pounds) of bomb-making
material when they arrested the 21-year-old man in the Balearic
island city of Palma de Mallorca.
2012 Oct 5, The Spanish
government agreed to participate in NATO's anti-missile shield that
will see specialized United States warships based at a Spanish base
already used by the US Navy.
2012 Oct 7, In Spain thousands
of people marched in 56 cities to protest punishing austerity cuts
they say will only increase unemployment and job insecurity in a
country suffering from its second recession in three years and
record high unemployment.
2012 Oct 10, The Spanish Red
Cross launched its first-ever campaign for donations to help
Spaniards hit by economic crisis, in a sign of how needy this nation
2012 Oct 22, Spain’s national
statistics institute reported that 21.1% of the nation’s 47 million
population lives below the poverty line, set at an annual $9,610.
(SFC, 10/23/12, p.A2)
2012 Oct 28, French police
arrested Izaskun Lesaka (37) and another suspected ETA member,
Joseba Iturbide Ochoteco (35), in a hotel in Macon. Police said
Lesaka was considered one of ETA's top three leaders and that police
also seized abundant computer equipment and a stolen car with false
2012 Oct 30, A Spanish judge
indicted 6 Chileans and an American accused of the 1976 kidnapping,
torture and murder of Carmelo Soria, a Spanish UN official in Chile.
International arrest warrants were issued for them to be tried in
Spain. The American named was Michael Townley, who served five years
in a US prison for complicity in the 1976 assassination in
Washington of former Chilean Ambassador Orlando Letelier and his
2012 Oct 31, Spanish
infrastructure company Ferrovial said an arm of China's sovereign
wealth fund has taken a 10 percent stake in the holding company
controlling Britain's largest airport Heathrow.
2012 Nov 1, In Spain an early
morning stampede at Madrid Arena, where thousands of people were
attending a Halloween party, killed 3 women and critically injured
2. Someone had set off a flare or a firework, causing the stampede.
2012 Nov 9, In Spain Amaia
Egana (53) threw herself from her fourth-floor balcony as bailiffs
arrived to repossess her flat. PM Mariano Rajoy said government will
aim to fast track reforms to halt evictions related to mortgage.
2012 Nov 12, Spain’s major
banks agreed to suspend evictions for two years of the most
financially vulnerable homeowners.
(SFC, 11/13/12, p.A2)
2012 Nov 14, Workers across the
European Union sought to present a united front against rampant
unemployment and government spending cuts with a string of strikes
and demonstrations across the region. In Belgium a 24-hour rail
stoppage and scattered strikes through the south of the nation
disrupted daily life. A Spanish strike shut down most schools and
while hospitals operated with a skeleton staff. In Portugal the
second general strike in eight months left commuters stranded as
trains ground to a virtual halt.
2012 Nov 25, Spanish voters in
Catalonia choosing lawmakers for parliament amid a threat from
Catalan leader Artur Mas to hold an independence referendum that
would test the country's unity. Catalonia voters showed that they
want the right to decide on possible independence, but split their
votes between fractious separatist parties, making that overall goal
less likely than ever.
(AP, 11/25/12)(AP, 11/26/12)
2012 Dec 12, Spanish
authorities said they have arrested a Panamanian woman arriving at
Barcelona airport from Bogota, Colombia, with 1.38 kg (3 pounds) of
cocaine concealed in breast implants.
2012 Dec 18, In Spain thousands
of people hit the streets to protest government spending cuts as the
PM Mariano Rajoy defended austerity measures. Unemployment was at
(SFC, 12/18/12, p.A4)
2012 Dec 30, Spain's Interior
Ministry said police have arrested 17 people on suspicion of
smuggling Nigerian women into Spain and forcing them into
prostitution using threats including claims they would cast Voodoo
spells on them if they didn't comply.
2013 Jan 3, The Basque
nationalist group known as Batasuna, legal in France but banned in
Spain, announced that it is dissolving after 11 years.
2013 Jan 6, Spain’s “El Nino”
lottery showered €840 million ($1.1 billion) on top ticket holders
in five regions as the country endured a deep recession and high
2013 Jan 11, Spanish police
said they have arrested two people and seized equipment they say was
due to be shipped to Iran for use in Tehran's nuclear program.
2013 Jan 17, British, Norwegian
and Spanish oil companies evacuated workers from Algerian energy
facilities following the hostage-taking by Islamic militants in the
Sahara desert and Algeria's attempt to free them.
2013 Jan 18, Spain's central
bank said the level of bad debt in the country's banks rose to a new
record 11.38 percent in November, up from 11.23 percent in October.
It was the 17th monthly increase in a row.
2013 Jan, Spanish papers
reported that slush money had flowed liberally for at least two
decades through the headquarters of the Popular Party, led by PM
Mariano Rajoy. Much of the money came from construction magnates who
received public contracts and helped inflate Spain’s disastrous
(Econ, 2/9/13, p.51)
2013 Feb 10, Acclaimed Spanish
writer Antonio Munoz Molina said he will accept the prestigious
Jerusalem Prize, an Israeli award given to authors, despite calls
from pro-Palestinian activists to boycott the Jewish state.
2013 Feb 13, Spanish
authorities announced the breakup of a cybercrime gang that used a
“ransomware” virus to lock computers throughout Europe. The gang had
made at least $1.35 annually.
(SFC, 2/14/13, p.A2)
2013 Feb 21, Spain’s Ferrovial,
a construction and services company, announced that it would buy
Enterprise, a British provider of municipal services, for £385 mil
(Econ, 3/9/13, p.68)
2013 Mar 1, The Spanish
government said it will challenge a recent declaration by lawmakers
in Catalonia that the region is a sovereign entity.
2013 Mar 22, Spain’s
restructuring fund, the FROB, imposed haircuts of up to 61% as it
turned junior debt and preference shares in 4 nationalized banks
(Bankia, Catalunya Banc, Banco Gallego, and NCG Banco) into equity.
(Econ, 3/30/13, p.72)
2013 Mar 23, Spanish,
Portuguese and British police boarded a ship loaded with nearly two
tons of cocaine destined for sale in Europe and arrested nine
people. The ship was in the Atlantic Ocean, some 700 miles southwest
of Portugal's Cape Verde islands.
2013 Mar, Norway expelled the
leadership of the Basque Homeland and Liberty (ETA) separatists.
(http://tinyurl.com/qd8kbqg)(Econ, 8/17/13, p.46)
2013 Apr 3, Spain's Princess
Cristina (47), daughter of King Juan Carlos, was charged in a
corruption inquiry amid evidence that she was an accomplice to her
husband, Inaki Urdangarin, who has been accused of tax fraud and
embezzling 6 million euros in public funds when he headed a
2013 Apr 14, In Spain thousands
of people demonstrated against the monarchy in Madrid.
(SFC, 4/15/13, p.A2)
2013 Apr 23, Spanish police
were reported to have arrested two suspected members of al-Qaida's
North African branch. Nou Mediouni (23), an Algerian, was arrested
in Zaragoza, while Hassan El Jaaouani (52), a Moroccan, was arrested
in Murcia. Neither was known to possess any explosives nor be
planning any attack.
2013 Apr, Spain’s government
passed legislation to stop banks foreclosing until mortgages are 3
months in arrears. Poorer families have 2 years.
(Econ, 4/27/13, p.52)
2013 May 2, Spanish police said
they have arrested 30 suspects who allegedly smuggled drugs into
Spain through the southern coast using boats and jet skis.
2013 May 7, A Spanish court
withdrew a subpoena for King Juan Carlos' daughter, Princess
Cristina (47), as a suspect in a corruption case, following an
appeal by prosecutors.
2013 May 10, British fugitive
Andrew Terence Moran (31) was taken into custody in Spain's eastern
town of Calpe. He was accused of taking part in the armed robbery of
25,000 pounds from a mail van in England in 2005, then escaping from
security guards during his UK trial four years ago.
2013 May 15, Dutch sociologist
Saskia Sassen was awarded Spain's Prince of Asturias social sciences
prize for her work in the field of globalization and urban
sociology. The jury said that one of her greatest scientific
contributions was "her concept of the 'global city', now accepted
and used worldwide."
2013 May 24, In Spain the
Catholic Archdiocese in Madrid said it needed more exorcists to help
some of its faithful cope with the devil.
(SFC, 5/25/13, p.A2)
2013 May 24, Arthur Budovsky,
the founder of Liberty Reserve, a Costa Rica-based digital currency
system long favored by cybercrime scammers, was arrested in Spain. A
defendant identified as Budovsky's partner, Vladimir Kats, was in
custody in New York. Budovsky was soon indicted in the United States
along with six other people in a $6 billion money-laundering scheme
described as "staggering" in its scope.
(AP, 5/29/13)(SFC, 5/29/13, p.D1)
2013 May 29, The EU granted
France, Spain, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal and Slovenia more time
to bring their budget deficits under control to support the bloc's
shrinking economy. The European Commission approved France’s request
to postpone by 2 years the target of cutting its budget deficit to
3% of GDP.
(AP, 5/29/13)(Econ, 6/1/13, p.55)
2013 Jun 21, Spanish police
arrested eight people suspected of recruiting jihadist militants for
al-Qaida-linked groups in Syria. The arrests were made in the
Spanish enclave of Ceuta on the northwest African coast.
2013 Jun 21, A Spanish court
sentenced Joan Vila (48), a former nursing home worker, to prison
after a jury found him guilty of murdering 11 elderly residents by
forcing them to drink toxic liquids. The killings happened in 2009
and 2010 at a nursing home in the small northeastern city of Olot
2013 Jun 26, The board of
Spanish energy giant Repsol rejected a $5 billion offer of
compensation from Argentina for the company's YPF unit that the
country seized last year. In December Repsol accepted the government
offer of $5 billion to avoid arbitration.
(AP, 6/26/13)(Econ, 11/30/13, p.36)
2013 Jun 30, In Spain Aurea
Vazquez Rijos, accused of hiring someone to kill her wealthy
Canadian husband in Puerto Rico on Sep 23, 2005, was arrested by
Spanish police after being sought for five years in the alleged
2013 Jul 7, In Spain several
thousand thrill-seekers tested their bravery by dashing alongside
six fighting bulls through the streets of of Pamplona on the first
day of the running of the bulls at the annual San Fermin festival.
Only four people were treated for injuries and no one was gored.
2013 Jul 12, In Spain an
American and two Spaniards were gored during a danger-filled sixth
bull run of the San Fermin festival, with one loose bull causing
panic in the packed streets of the city of Pamplona.
2013 Jul 13, In Spain the
penultimate bull run of the San Fermin festival left at least 23
people injured. Two of the injuries were gorings.
2013 Jul 14, In Spain a bull
gored an Australian woman (23) and left her seriously injured during
the final run of this year's annual San Fermin festival. 4 other
runners were hospitalized with cuts and bruises.
2013 Jul 15, Spain’s former
treasurer Luis Barcenas began talking about about two decades of
illicit Popular party (PP) financing.
(Econ, 7/20/13, p.48)
2013 Jul 16, Spanish police
said they have arrested Brian Charrington, a Briton suspected of
leading a drug-trafficking organization, describing him as one of
Europe's top 10 most wanted criminals. He was arrested along with
his girlfriend and son as part of a police operation in which 13
people were detained between Spain and Venezuela.
2013 Jul 18, In Spain thousands
of protesters demanding the resignation of PM Mariano Rajoy
demonstrated in Madrid. What started as a peaceful event turned
violent toward midnight after riot police clashed with some
protesters, resulting in at least several people arrested and
2013 Jul 23, Spanish police
arrested 25 members of the Hells Angels motorcycle gang on the
Mediterranean resort island of Mallorca. Police said they were
wanted for suspected drug trafficking, trafficking in human beings,
extortion, money laundering and corruption.
2013 Jul 24, A Spanish train
hurtled off the rails and smashed into a security wall as it rounded
a bend near Santiago de Compostela. 79 people were killed in the
country’s deadliest wreck in four decades. The train was carrying
218 passengers in eight carriages when it crashed. Later reports
said the driver was taking on the phone and reading a document.
(AP, 7/25/13)(SFC, 7/31/13, p.A2)
2013 Jul 26, Spanish police
detained Francisco Jose Garzon Amo (52), the driver of a July 24
train crash. The death was lowered toll from 80 to 78 and
authorities took possession of the "black box" of the train hoping
to shed light on why it was going faster than the speed limit on the
curve where it derailed. The train was later reported to have been
traveling at 95-mph, far above the 50-mph speed limit on the curve
where it crashed killing 79 people.
(AP, 7/26/13)(SFC, 7/27/13, p.A5)(SFC, 7/31/13,
2013 Jul 27, In Spain a youth
(16) was gored in the back while celebrating the Apostle James feast
at Isso, 322 km (200 miles) southeast of Madrid.
2013 Aug 1, Spain’s PM Mariano
Rajoy told lawmakers that his government would toughen up corruption
laws and rules for the allocation of public contracts, in the wake
of a corruption scandal.
2013 Aug 3, Morocco’s King
Mohamed VI revoked a pardon granted on July 30 to Spanish pedophile
Daniel Fino Galvan. Galvan, already back in Spain, was soon arrested
by Spanish authorities.
2013 Aug 10, Spain’s Interior
Ministry said that 75 people have been arrested in a joint operation
by Spanish and French police. They included 51 in Spain and 24 in
France. Two Barcelona-based suspected heads of the gang, that
allegedly smuggled Chinese citizens into Europe and the United
States, were among those arrested.
2013 Aug 15, Rosalia Mera (69),
Spain's richest woman, died in La Coruna. The former seamstress and
her then-husband, Armancio Ortega co-founded a clothing store in
1975 in La Coruna that grew into Zara, one of the world's largest
retail chains. Ortega is listed by Forbes as the world's
2013 Aug 16, British PM David
Cameron asked European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso to
"urgently" send monitors to Gibraltar's border with Spain where
tightened security checks are fuelling a row between the two
2013 Aug 18, Spanish fishermen
in some 60 fishing boats protested the building of an artificial
reef near the disputed British territory of Gibraltar.
2013 Aug 27, In Portugal and
Spain firefighters and local residents struggled to tackle raging
wildfires that have consumed large swathes of forest, claiming the
lives of 4 emergency workers. Almost 31,000 hectares (77,000 acres)
of Portugal's countryside has already been destroyed by fire this
2013 Aug 28, In Spain some
20,000 revelers pelted each other with 130 tons (286 pounds) of
squashed tomatoes in a rain-drenched annual Spanish food fight known
as the Tomatina, but this year they had to pay to join the fun.
2013 Sep 2, Spanish police said
they have arrested a gang of 10 bank robbers in Madrid who used the
drains to enter and flee from bank branches.
2013 Sep 11, Thousands of
Catalan separatists gathered to try to form a 400 Km (250 mile)
human chain across the region and renew pressure for a referendum on
breaking away from Spain.
2013 Sep 16, In Syria an
al-Qaida linked group kidnapped Xavier Espinosa, a Spanish
journalist, and photographer Ricardo Garcia Vilanova. Both men were
released on March 30, 2014.
(SFC, 12/11/13, p.A2)(AP, 3/30/14)
2013 Sep 17, Hundreds of
Africans seeking to enter Europe made a coordinated assault on the
triple wall that divides Spanish enclave Melilla from Morocco, with
about a hundred of them getting over.
2013 Sep 30, A Spanish man (39)
confessed to killing his younger brother with a hammer, cutting up
the body and putting the remains in the freezer after a tempestuous
year of sharing the same home.
2013 Oct 4, A Spanish court
convicted 53 people in the country’s biggest corruption trial. The
two year trial centered on widespread real estate fraud and bribery
in the resort town of Marbella.
(SFC, 10/5/13, p.A2)
2013 Oct 5, In northern Spain
tens of thousands of people took to the streets to protest a
crackdown on an association that aids jailed members of armed Basque
separatist group ETA.
2013 Oct 12, In Spain thousands
of people gathered in Barcelona to demonstrate against a proposed
Catalonia split away from Spain.
(SSFC, 10/13/13, p.A3)
2013 Oct 13, The Vatican
beatified 522 people — mostly priests and nuns — who were killed in
the turmoil that led to Spain's 1936-39 civil war.
2013 Oct 17, Spanish police
said they have arrested 17 people for their role in stealing watches
worth 23 million euros ($31 million) in Dec 2012, resolving one of
the country's biggest jewelry heists.
2013 Oct 18, In Spain Luis
Barcenas, the jailed former financial chief of the ruling Popular
Party, said he personally handed thousands of euros to the party's
current secretary general as part of an off-the-books payment scheme
he acknowledges he ran.
2013 Oct 21, Europe's top human
rights court ordered Spain to release a Basque separatist militant,
saying her extended detention was illegal, a ruling victims groups
warned would let dozens of prisoners walk free. Ines del Rio was
jailed in 1989 for her role in 23 assassinations and car bombings
carried out by the Basque independence movement ETA.
2013 Oct 21, Spain's oil
company Repsol announced a high quality light oil find in Libya's
2013 Oct 22, Spanish judges
ordered ETA prisoner Ines del Rio freed after Europe's rights court
ruled against her prolonged detention, opening the way to the
release of dozens of other violent Basque separatists.
2013 Oct 27, In Spain several
thousand people gathered in downtown Madrid to protest the release
from jail of Basque separatists, convicted of attacks but freed
under a European Court of Human Rights ruling.
2013 Oct 28, A Spanish
newspaper published a document that it said shows the US National
Security Agency spied on more than 60 million phone calls in Spain
in one month alone — the latest revelation about alleged massive US
spying on allies.
2013 Oct 28, In northern Spain
6 miners died and five others were injured after a gas leak at a
coal mine at the Santa Lucia mine near the town of Pola de Gordon.
2013 Oct, In Spain all the
factories of appliance-maker Fagor ceased operations. Fagor was part
of Mondragon, the world’s biggest group of worker-owned
(Econ, 11/9/13, p.72)
2013 Nov 2, Britain’s Guardian
newspaper reported that spy agencies in Germany, France, Spain and
Sweden are carrying out mass surveillance of online and phone
traffic in collaboration with Britain, according to documents leaked
by Edward Snowden.
2013 Nov 4, A Spanish court
impounded a luxury villa and other properties belonging to the
son-in-law of Spanish King Juan Carlos in a corruption case. The
court in Mallorca ordered the seizure of properties owned by Inaki
Urdangarin, husband of the king's daughter Cristina. The court is
investigating accusations that Urdangarin, an ex-Olympic handball
player, and his former business partner Diego Torres embezzled six
million euros in public funds.
2013 Nov 8, A Spanish court
ordered nine imprisoned members of the Basque militant group ETA
freed to comply with a controversial European rights ruling made
2013 Nov 10, Spanish police
said they have busted a gang of 25 Nigerians who were engaged in
human trafficking for sexual exploitation, Internet fraud and money
2013 Nov 11, In Spain cartons,
plastic bottles and other litter piled up in the streets of Madrid
as an open-ended strike by street-sweepers against layoffs and pay
cuts entered the seventh day.
2013 Nov 14, EU officials
welcomed the end of bailout support for Spain and Ireland, saying
that showed the effectiveness of more than four years of efforts to
cut excessive government debt.
2013 Nov 15, The EU executive
said it had found no proof of British claims that Spain had violated
European Union rules on border and customs checks at Gibraltar's
2013 Nov 19, Spain's National
Court said it has issued arrest orders for former Chinese president
Jiang Zemin and four other Chinese officials as part of a probe into
alleged genocide by China against Tibet.
2013 Nov 19, Mexican journalist
and author Elena Poniatowska won the 2013 Cervantes Prize, the
Spanish-speaking world's highest literary honor.
2013 Nov 21, A Spanish court
sentenced the town mayor of Marinaleda and four others to seven
months in prison for occupying unused military land they wanted to
be loaned to farmers hard hit by the economic crisis.
2013 Dec 4, Scientists reported
mitochondrial DNA results from a human thighbone found in Spain
estimated to be 400,000 years old. The DNA showed a closer relation
to Denisovans who lived in Siberia than to Neanderthals.
(SFC, 12/5/13, p.A9)
2013 Dec 12, In Spain
separatist parties in the northeastern Catalonia region agreed the
wording of an independence referendum on November 9, 2014, but the
Spanish government said the vote was illegal and would not happen.
2013 Dec 15, France and Spain
inaugurated high-speed rail service between Barcelona and Paris
cutting travel time by half to about six hours.
(SFC, 12/16/13, p.A2)
2013 Dec 19, Spanish police
searched the headquarters of the ruling People's Party (PP) for 14
hours as part of a corruption investigation that earlier this year
threatened to destabilize the government of PM Rajoy.
2013 Dec 20, Spain's government
approved a tightening of the abortion law that would overturn
women's right to abort freely up to 14 weeks of pregnancy.
2013 Dec 22, In Spain millions
were glued to their televisions as 2.5 billion in euros was
distributed in the country’s Christmas lottery during a 4-hour TV
show. For the first time 20% of winnings over 2,500 euros was taxed.
(SFC, 12/23/13, p.A2)
2013 Jeremy Treglown authored
“Franco’s Crypt: Spanish Culture and Memory Since 1936.”
(Econ, 8/10/13, p.71)
2014 Jan 3, Spanish police said
they have caught two women flying in from Brazil with more than a
kilo (two pounds) of cocaine each hidden under their wigs. The two
women, who were Portuguese and aged 18 and 28, arrived at Madrid's
Barajas airport on different days from Sao Paulo.
2014 Jan 5, Spanish police
arrested Abdeluahid Sadik Mohamed at Malaga airport after arriving
on a flight bound from Istanbul. He was suspected of belonging to an
al-Qaida linked terror organization and participating in the Syrian
2014 Jan 7, Princess Cristina
(48), the younger daughter of Spain's King Juan Carlos, was charged
with tax fraud and money-laundering.
2014 Jan 9, Disparate Syrian
opposition groups, including several Islamist rebel representatives,
met for the first time in the Spanish city of Cordoba to seek common
ground ahead of peace talks with President Bashar al-Assad's
government later this month.
2014 Jan 10, A Spanish court
ordered the extradition of Aurea Vazquez Rijos (33), a Puerto Rican
woman, wanted by US federal authorities for allegedly hiring a hit
man to kill her wealthy Canadian husband. Adam Anhang was beaten and
stabbed to death in Puerto Rico on Sep 23, 2005, while he walked
with Vazquez near a bar he had bought for her.
2014 Jan 11, In Spain tens of
thousands of protesters marched in Bilbao in support of jailed
members of the Basque separatist group ETA. A high court judge had
vetoed the march, which was initially organized by prisoners'
supporters to call for inmates to be moved to jails closer to their
2014 Jan 15, In Spain police
clashed with demonstrators in Madrid as thousands of people marched
across the country to protest against costly plans to redevelop a
street in the northern city of Burgos, where protests continued for
a 6th day.
2014 Jan 15, Roughly 60
migrants entered Spain's north African territory of Melilla after
charging a barbed-wire border fence bordering Morocco.
2014 Jan 16, In Spain Catalan
lawmakers voted in favor of asking for the right to hold a
referendum on independence.
2014 Jan 18, Officials say
Spanish police have arrested Juegers Veloz (37), a
Dominican fugitive wanted by US authorities for a multimillion
dollar cellphone fraud in 2009-2011.
2014 Jan 19, Pope Francis'
newly chosen Spanish cardinal, Fernando Sebastian Aguilar (84),
described homosexuality as a "defect" that can be corrected with
treatment, sparking condemnation from gay rights groups.
2014 Jan 22, In Pakistan gunmen
opened fire on police escorting Spanish cyclist Javier Colorado
through Baluchistan province, killing six officers and wounding the
Spaniard. He was reported to be cycling around the world.
2014 Jan 29, Int’l. charity
Save the Children said a third of the children in Spain are at the
risk of poverty or social exclusion due to ongoing austerity
(SFC, 1/30/14, p.A2)
2014 Feb 1, In Spain thousands
of people marched in Madrid to protest against a government plan to
limit abortions that has caused unusually open divisions in the
ruling conservative People's Party.
2014 Feb 2, In Spain several
thousand people marched from a Coca-Cola bottling plant in a
southwestern suburb to downtown Madrid to protest the company's plan
to close four plants in Spain and lay off 1,253 workers.
2014 Feb 4, Spanish police said
drug traffickers used a sophisticated system of floating backpacks
with a tracking system to try to smuggle 900 kg (2,000 pounds) of
cocaine into the country.
2014 Feb 5, A planned extension
of the Panama Canal, one of the world's most important shipping
routes, was thrown into doubt after a group of companies, led by
Spanish builder Sacyr, said its talks with Panama's government over
how to expand the canal had fallen apart. Panama Canal Authority
head Jorge Quijano said the expansion project will be completed in
2015 with or without a Spanish-led consortium.
2014 Feb 5, The Luno, mostly
empty Spanish cargo ship, broke in two after hitting a sea wall off
the southwestern coast of France in high winds and was leaking some
fuel into the water.
2014 Feb 6, Fifteen migrants
drowned while trying to swim to the Spanish enclave of Ceuta from a
beach in neighboring Morocco. Authorities said "around 400
sub-Saharans" had taken part in the desperate bid to reach EU
territory. On Feb 13 Spain said border police had fired rubber
bullets in an attempt to turn back around 200 migrants who tried to
cross the frontier. Videos later showed police firing rubber
bullets. Police denied the action contributed to the drowning. On
Feb 11, 2015, the Ceuta court said 16 Civil Guard officers will
appear for questioning in March.
(AFP, 2/6/14)(Reuters, 2/13/14)(AP, 2/11/15)
2014 Feb 7, Spain’s Cabinet
approved a bill amending previous legislation that granted
nationality by naturalization to Sephardic Jews who chose to apply
for it. The reform will allow dual nationality, enabling people who
can prove Sephardic ancestry to also retain their previous
2014 Feb 8, In Spain thousands
of women marched in the streets of Madrid to protest against the
Spanish government's plan to restrict access to abortion.
2014 Feb 10, Spanish High Court
Judge Ismael Moreno sought international arrest orders for former
Chinese President Jiang Zemin, ex-PM Li Peng and others on
allegations of genocide in Tibet.
2014 Feb 17, A wave of around
250 African migrants managed to breach the high defenses of the
Spanish enclave of Melilla in Morocco, with more than half making it
into the EU territory.
2014 Feb 21, In Spain
international mediators said the armed Basque separatist group ETA
has placed a small quantity of guns and explosives out of use in
what is seen as a first step toward an unconditional total
2014 Feb 21, A Spanish court
ruled that Arthur Budovsky (40), accused of being behind Liberty
Reserves, one of the world's biggest money laundering businesses,
can be extradited to the US to face charges there.
2014 Feb 24, In Morocco
hundreds of sub-Saharan migrants armed with sticks and stones
stormed the six-meter (20-foot) high double barbed wire border fence
in a bid to enter Spain's northwest African enclave of Melilla, with
about 100 of them making it across.
2014 Mar 1, In Spain armed
Basque separatist group ETA pledged to give up all its weapons but
warned the government that any attack or obstacle could impact
negatively on the disarmament process.
2014 Mar 4, Moroccan forces
turned back some 700 sub-Saharan African migrants who attempted to
cross into the Spanish enclave of Ceuta.
2014 Mar 14, Moroccan and
Spanish authorities arrested seven suspected members of an
al-Qaida-linked extremist cell allegedly recruiting members to fight
in Syria and other hotspots.
2014 Mar 17, British
telecommunications company Vodafone agreed to buy Spain's Ono for
7.2 billion euros ($10 billion) as it seeks to expand operations
2014 Mar 18, In Morocco
hundreds of migrants tried to force their way into Spain's North
African enclave of Melilla in two attempted mass crossings, throwing
stones at police who tried to stop them. 500 people made it over.
(Reuters, 3/18/14)(SFC, 4/10/14, p.A5)
2014 Mar 22, Spanish police
detained 24 people during street violence late today following a
large anti-austerity demonstration in Madrid in which dozens were
2014 Mar 23, In Spain Adolfo
Suarez (b.1932), prime minister from 1976-1981, died. He had steered
Spain through one of the most turbulent periods in its political
history and built bridges between the "two Spains" after fascist
dictator General Francisco Franco died in 1975.
2014 Mar 26, Spanish police
arrested more than 50 students during a protest at a Madrid
university during the first day of a strike to protest a government
education reform and cutbacks in grants and staffing.
2014 Mar 26, A British
financial watchdog said it has fined Spanish banking giant Santander
almost £12.4 million for mis-advising customers.
2014 Mar 28, In Morocco some
800 African migrants tried to climb barbed-wire fences to enter the
Spanish enclave of Melilla. Most were turned back by security forces
from both sides.
2014 Apr 2, Britain summoned
the Spanish ambassador to condemn what it called a provocative
incursion by Spanish boats into Gibraltar's territorial waters a day
2014 Apr 5, Spain’s foreign
minister announced that his country has suspended the export of riot
gear to Venezuela’s government following weeks of unrest.
(SSFC, 4/6/14, p.A2)
2014 Apr 7, Spain said it has
dismantled a group it accused of plotting to send industrial
equipment to Iran that could be used for weapon manufacture in
violation of international sanctions. Four suspects were arrested.
2014 Apr 8, Spanish lawmakers
overwhelmingly shot down Catalonia's bid for an independence
2014 Apr 18, Spanish art dealer
Jose Carlos Bergantinos Diaz, who is wanted for fraud in the United
States, was arrested at a luxury hotel in Seville. His partner,
Glafira Rosales, was arraigned in New York in August, accused of
peddling counterfeit art for 15 years as undiscovered works by
2014 May 1, In Morocco some 700
African migrants charged Spain's barbed-wire border fences in the
North African enclave of Melilla, clashing with Spanish and Moroccan
border police. 140 of the migrants managed to enter Spanish
territory despite the efforts of the border police.
2014 May 8, In southwestern
Spain 5 members of a youth football team aged between 12 and 15 were
killed when their bus collided with another vehicle. police arrested
the driver of the second vehicle, a farm digger, after he tested
positive for drugs.
2014 May 17, In Morocco some
700 African migrants charged barbed wire fenses in two waves at the
Spanish enclave of Melilla. Moroccan and Spanish border guards
repulsed the charges.
(SSFC, 5/18/14, p.A4)
2014 May 28, In Spain 30 people
were arrested and 14 others hurt when police clashed with
stone-throwing youths in a third night of riots sparked by a squat
eviction in Barcelona.
2014 May 28, In Morocco more
than 1,000 would-be immigrants tried to forced their way over
razor-wire barriers into Spain's North African enclave of Melilla,
with about half succeeding. Around 2,000 have breached the 12-km.
barriers so far this year, up from just over 1,000 for the whole of
2014 May 29, In Spain police in
Barcelona arrested 23 people after a fourth night of clashes with
2014 May 30, Spain's police
arrested six members of a group that allegedly recruited jihadist
militants to fight in Libya and Mali. The arrests took place in
north African enclave city of Melilla.
2014 Jun 1, Spanish police
arrested six more people after a sixth night of clashes with youths
2014 Jun 2, Spain's King Juan
Carlos announced he will abdicate in favor of his son, Crown Prince
Felipe (46), making way for a "new generation." He had led Spain's
transition from dictatorship to democracy but faced royal scandals
amid the nation's near financial meltdown.
2014 Jun 7, In Spain thousands
of protesters took to the streets of Madrid to demand a referendum
to abolish Spain's monarchy, just days after King Juan Carlos
abdicated in favor of his son.
2014 Jun 8, In Spain suspected
ETA member Maria Jesus Elorza Zubizarreta was arrested as she
arrived on a flight from Venezuela. She had fled to France in 1984
and allegedly participated in bomb-making activities for the group
before moving to Venezuela.
2014 Jun 8, In Spain tens of
thousands of Basques held hands to form a 123-km chain stretching
across the northern Spanish region calling for the right to hold a
vote on independence.
2014 Jun 9, In Spain a
Eurofighter jet crashed while landing at the Moron air base near
Seville. Media reported that the pilot had died in the crash.
2014 Jun 11, Spanish lawmakers
approved the abdication of King Juan Carlos by a wide margin, paving
the way for his son Felipe to take the scandal-hit throne despite
2014 Jun 11, Taxi drivers
staged protests in London, Berlin, Barcelona, Madrid and Paris.
Cabbies and train workers walked off the job, leaving traffic
snarled, as they protested changes to the travel industry that they
say could endanger passengers and give untested upstarts an unfair
2014 Jun 13, The Spanish
government said it has approved legislation to sell 49 percent of
the national aviation authority AENA and also open up one of the
country's passenger rail routes to a private operator.
2014 Jun 14, Spanish and
Moroccan security forces drove back 1,000 African migrants who tried
to scramble over a border fence from Morocco into the Spanish
territory of Melilla.
2014 Jun 16, In Spain a Madrid
court sentenced ETA member Juan Ramon Carasatorre Aldaz (52) to 29
years for the killing of infantry brigadier Mariano de Juan
Santamaria, who was shot in the head on April 10, 1995, in the
northern city of San Sebastian.
2014 Jun 16, Spanish police
detained eight people in Madrid on suspicion of recruiting jihadi
militants for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL.
2014 Jun 18, In Morocco some
400 sub-Saharan migrants stormed Spain's multiple-barbed-wire border
fences separating its North African enclave of Melilla from Morocco,
but failed in their bid to enter Europe.
2014 Jun 19, In Spain divorced
former journalist, Letizia Ortiz, became Spain's first commoner
queen when her husband, Felipe VI (46), was sworn in as king.
2014 Jun 22, Spain’s police
said three people have been arrested on suspicion of illegally
scanning and then unlawfully publishing books on a large scale. More
than 1000 books and 10 computer hard drives full of texts were
(SFC, 6/23/14, p.A2)
2014 Jun 24, Spain's Supreme
Court approved a $7-billion oil exploration project off the Canary
2014 Jun 25, In Spain a judge
in Madrid charged Princess Cristina with tax fraud and money
laundering in a case involving her husband and business associates
charged with embezzling millions in public funds earmarked for
(SFC, 6/26/14, p.A2)
2014 Jun 25, In Spain
award-winning author Ana Maria Matute (88), best known for her books
set during the Spanish Civil War, died.
2014 Jun 29, In Morocco around
500 migrants of sub-Saharan origin tried to storm Spain's
barbed-wire border fence separating its North African enclave of
Melilla from Morocco but all failed in their bid to enter Europe.
2014 Jul 9, Spain’s Interior
Ministry said police in Madrid have arrested 32 suspected members of
Italy's Camorra crime group involved in drug trafficking, extortion,
fraud and money laundering. Four arrests were also reported in
2014 Jul 18, Spanish police in
Alicante arrested Hernan Alonso Villa (40), the alleged leader of a
Colombian drug trafficking group.
(SSFC, 7/20/14, p.A7)
2014 Jul 27, Spanish police
said they have arrested 14 members of a gang of suspected of selling
forged passports for entry to the US. Eleven Cuban and three
Spaniards were arrested in Tenerife and Madrid.
(SFC, 7/28/14, p.A2)
2014 Jul 29, A Spanish judge
issued an indictment against Jordi Pujol (b.1930) and his wife for
money laundering and tax evasion. The former leader of Catalonia
(1980-2003) had recently admitted that his family had hidden money
in Switzerland for the past 35 years.
2014 Aug 6, Spanish police said
they have seized 127 kg of cocaine from a Spanish navy training
ship, which allegedly carried the drug from Colombia and dropped off
some in New York. A Civil Guard statement said three sailors were
arrested on July 12 when the ship returned to Spain, but the drug
wasn't found until Aug 2.
2014 Aug 12, The Spanish sea
rescue service said it has picked up more than 900 migrants trying
to enter Spain clandestinely by crossing the Strait of Gibraltar in
boats from north Africa over the past two days. Some 700 migrants
stormed border fences to try to enter Spain's northwest African
enclave city of Melilla from Morocco. Some 30 migrants managed to
enter the city.
2014 Aug 12, A Spanish
missionary priest being treated for Ebola died in a Madrid hospital
amid a worldwide debate over who should get experimental Ebola
treatments. Miguel Parajes (75) had worked for the San Juan de Dios
hospital order, a Catholic aid group, and had been helping to treat
people with Ebola in Liberia when he became ill and was evacuated.
2014 Aug 14, In Morocco some
250 African migrants tried to leap a triple-layer border fence
around Spain's north African territory of Melilla but only one
person made it through.
2014 Aug 16, Spanish poilice
said they have arrested a Venezuelan woman (43) arriving from
Colombia carrying 3.7 pounds of cocaine in her breast implants.
(SFC, 8/16/14, p.A2)
2014 Sep 9, In Spain banking
magnate Emilio Botin (79) died of a heart attack. He built the
country's Banco Santander into a global financial giant and was
widely seen as the nation's most influential business leader.
2014 Sep 11, In Spain hundreds
of thousands marched in downtown Barcelona on Catalonia’s annual
National Day. This was seen as a prelude to an upcoming vote for
(SSFC, 9/14/14, p.A4)
2014 Sep 17, Barcelona, Spain,
captured the grand prize in a competition that spurs cities to
develop novel approaches to improve urban life. Former New York City
Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced the Mayors Challenge winners,
selected from 21 finalists, in Paris.
2014 Sep 25, Spain's National
Statistics Institute said money generated by drug trafficking,
prostitution, smuggling and illegal gambling contributed some 9
billion euros ($11.4 billion) to the national economy last year.
2014 Sep 25, China and Spain
signed business deals worth $4 billion on as Spanish PM Mariano
Rajoy visited the Asian powerhouse to seek support for Spain's
2014 Sep 26, Morocco and Spain
said a cross-border cell in the Spanish enclave of Melilla and the
neighboring Moroccan city of Nador to recruit jihadis to fight for
the Islamic State group has been dismantled.
2014 Sep 27, In Spain Artur
Mas, the president of the Catalonia region, signed a decree calling
for a referendum on independence on Nov. 9, putting the local
government on a collision course with Madrid, which says such a vote
2014 Sep 27, Spanish director
Carlos Vermut won this year's top award for his film "Magical Girl"
and also claimed the best director prize at Spain's San Sebastian
2014 Sep 28, Spanish police
said they have arrested 10 of the country's most active graffiti
painters on suspicion of being responsible for over 600,000 euros
($760,000) worth of damage to subway rolling stock.
2014 Sep 29, In Sudan a Spanish
diplomat (61) was found stabbed to death in his apartment in
2014 Sep 30, In Spain the
regional government of Catalonia said it will heed a decision by
Spain's top court suspending its plans to hold an independence
referendum but vows to continue efforts to hold a vote.
2014 Oct 1, Spain's El Pais
newspaper said five Spanish soldiers who served in Iraq in 2004
faced trial on charges of torture for brutally beating two Iraqi
2014 Oct 3, In Spain the
pro-independence regional government in Catalonia said it still
plans to hold a secession referendum Nov. 9 as it studies ways to
convince Spain's Constitutional Court to lift a provisional
suspension of the vote.
2014 Oct 6, In Spain a nursing
assistant was diagnosed with Ebola. She had cared for a Spanish
priest who died of the disease last month. 4 other people were
quarantined and her dog was ordered killed.
(SFC, 10/8/14, p.A3)
2014 Oct 11, In Spain three
more people were under observation for Ebola in a Madrid hospital,
boosting the number being monitored for symptoms to 16. A nursing
assistant infected with the virus remained in serious but stable
2014 Oct 15, In Morocco some
300 African migrants scaled fences six-meters (20-feet) high to try
to enter Spain's northwest African enclave city of Melilla. 5 police
officers and 5 migrants were treated for minor injuries. Three
migrants managed to reach Melilla.
2014 Oct 20, The Spanish
government said several hundred African migrants staged multiple
attempts to scale the border fences separating Spain's North African
enclave of Melilla from Morocco, with about 60 managing to get
2014 Oct 27, In Spain 51
people, including six sitting mayors, were arrested for bribery and
(Econ, 11/8/14, p.55)
2014 Oct 29, In Morocco some
350 African migrants tried to storm a fence into Spanish territory.
Three made it into the territory of Melilla.
2014 Oct, Xnet, a group of
Spanish cyber activists, made public documents helping prove that
senior officials at Spain's bailed-out Bankia bank used undeclared
credit cards from the bank to spend some 15 million euros ($18.6
million) on luxury goods, vacations across Spain and abroad, and
even regular supermarket purchases.
2014 Nov 4, Spain's
Constitutional Court suspended plans by the northeastern region of
Catalonia to hold an informal independence poll Nov. 9 following a
legal challenge by the government. The regional government of
Catalonia said that it would go ahead with a straw poll on
(AP, 11/4/14)(SFC, 11/5/14, p.A2)
2014 Nov 8, In southern Spain a
bus carrying a group on a religious excursion crashed, killing 14
people and injuring another 38.
2014 Nov 9, In Spain some 1.9
million Catalans, out of 6.3m eligible, voted in a symbolic
referendum on independence. About 80 percent backed secession, with
a turnout of about 37 percent.
(Reuters, 11/9/14)(Reuters, 11/10/14)(Econ,
2014 Nov 11, In Spain Artur
Mas, the head of Catalonia's regional government, proposed that PM
Mariano Rajoy establish a permanent dialogue over Catalan
independence and raft of measures to boost its economy.
2014 Nov 11, Spain’s police
targeted more than 30 suspects across the country in raids on an
alleged bribery racket implicating public officials.
2014 Nov 12, Spanish PM Mariano
Rajoy urged Catalonia to seek a constitutional reform to resolve its
political problems with Madrid but he ruled out talks on a possible
referendum on independence.
2014 Nov 15, Portuguese and
Spanish police said they have arrested 15 people, including two
Spanish police, on suspicion of trying to smuggle 2.1 metric tons of
hashish into Spain hidden inside a concrete mixer truck.
2014 Nov 16, In northern Spain
a fire has destroyed one of the country’s largest meat producing
plants and created a plume of black smoke that forced the closure of
a highway in the northern city of Burgos.
2014 Nov 18, Spain’s parliament
overwhelmingly approved a symbolic resolution that recognizes a
(SFC, 11/19/14, p.A2)
2014 Nov 19, A Spanish court
ordered popular folk singer Isabel Pantoja (58) to jail after her
appeals against a two-year sentence for money laundering were
rejected. She was found guilty of laundering money for Julian Munoz,
a former boyfriend and one-time mayor of Marbella.
2014 Nov 19, In Spain
Fitz-James Stuart y Silva (b.1926), the Duchess of Alba, died.
Forbes recently estimated her wealth to be in the region of 2.8
billion euros ($3.5 billion). Her more than 40 titles made her the
world's most titled noble.
2014 Nov 21, Spanish
prosecutors filed suits against government officials in Catalonia
for staging a vote on secession that had been ordered suspended by
the Constitutional Court.
(SFC, 11/22/14, p.A2)
2014 Nov 22, In Spain tens of
thousands of people have took part in a demonstration in Madrid to
protest against the conservative government's decision to scrap
plans to restrict the availability of abortion.
2014 Nov 24, Popular Spanish
author Juan Goytisolo (83) won the 2014 Cervantes Prize, the
Spanish-speaking world's highest literary honor. His works include
"Marks of Identity", "Count Julian" and "Juan the Landless".
2014 Nov 24, In Spain 3 priests
and a lay person were arrested in Granada on suspicion of child sex
abuse in a case which Interior Minister Jorge Fernandez Diaz said
Pope Francis has taken a special interest in uncovering.
(AP, 11/24/14)(Reuters, 11/24/14)
2014 Nov 26, Spain’s Health
Minister Ana Mato resigned after an investigating judge accused her
of benefiting from a kickback scheme.
2014 Nov 27, Spain's parliament
approved two long-delayed anti-corruption laws, a day after a
minister became the first government casualty in a series of alleged
2014 Nov 27, It was reported
that Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim will invest 500 million euros
($624 million) in Spanish construction firm FCC and receive a
controlling stake in the company.
2014 Dec 5, Spain’s Marine
Rescue Service rescued 29 African migrants from the 33-foot-long
boat after finding it drifting in the Mediterranean Sea. Some 23
migrants were swept away to sea. On Jan 15 Police said two
Cameroonian migrants have been arrested for allegedly killing up to
10 others by pushing them from the boat into stormy waters in a
fight over a prayer session.
(AP, 12/8/14(AP, 1/15/15)
2014 Dec 11, Google announced
it will close Google News in Spain and block reports from Spanish
publishers from more than 70 Google News international editions due
to a new Spanish law requiring aggregators to pay to link content.
2014 Dec 16, The Spanish
Interior Ministry said Spanish and Moroccan police have arrested
seven people in a ongoing joint swoop on suspected efforts to
recruit women to go to Syria and Iraq to support Islamic State
2014 Dec 20, In Spain thousands
of people protested in cities against a new law that sets hefty
fines for offenses such as burning the national flag and
demonstrating outside parliament buildings or strategic
installations. The Public Security Law was approved last week by
2014 Dec 22, Spaniards were
glued to televisions as awards were announced in the world's richest
lottery. Holders of over 100 tickets in an upper middle class Madrid
neighborhood hit the jackpot as they celebrated winning 400,000-euro
($490,000) payoffs from a 2.5 billion-euro ($3 billion) pot of cash.
20 were also purchased in the southern city of Cadiz and a handful
were sold in other cities across the nation.
2014 Dec 26, Spain's PM Mariano
Rajoy announced minimal increases to the minimum wage and for
government-funded pensions and predicted the nation's economy will
"take off" in 2015.
2014 Dec 29, Spanish police in
the Canary Islands arrested two former members of the Irish
Republican Army and five accomplices during a sweep on an alleged
tobacco and alcohol smuggling racket. Leonard Hardy (53) and his
wife Donna Maria Elizabeth Hardy (48) were both convicted of a 1989
bombing of a British army barracks in Germany. Officials froze
property assets worth more than 5.5 million euros ($6.5 million),
and 90 bank accounts and investment portfolios in Spain.
2014 Dec 30, In Morocco some
200 African migrants stormed border fences separating Spain's North
African enclave of Melilla from Morocco, with 102 managing to avoid
police interception and make it across.
2014 Dec 31, In Morocco some
800 African migrants tried to storm the border fences separating
Spain's North African enclave of Melilla in the second such attempt
in two days. 54 migrants managed to make it across.
2015 Jan 6, Spain’s El Nino a
lottery spread 560 million euros ($666 million) among jubilant
ticket holders throughout the country.
2015 Jan 10, In Spain thousands
marched in several cities to press for easier access to
latest-generation medicines to counter hepatitis C.
(SSFC, 1/11/15, p.A6)
2015 Jan 14, A judicial
official said Spain's Supreme Court has agreed to examine a
paternity suit against former king Juan Carlos by a woman who claims
to be his daughter.
2015 Jan 24, Spanish police
arrested four suspected Islamist extremists who it said were
prepared to launch attacks in Spain.
2015 Jan 25, In Spain thousands
of protesters marched in cities to express their opposition to a
proposed law that would set hefty fines for offenses like
demonstrating outside parliament buildings or strategic
2015 Jan 26, In southeastern
Spain a Greek F-16 fighter jet crashed into a hangar at the Los
Llanos military base while it was participating in NATO maneuvers.
Two pilots aboard the Greek F-16 were killed along with 8 French air
force members on the ground. Another French airman died of wounds
the next day.
(AP, 1/26/15)(AP, 1/27/15)
2015 Jan 31, In Spain at least
100,000 people marched through Madrid in a show of strength by a
fledgling radical leftist party, which hopes to emulate the success
of Greece's Syriza party in general elections later this year.
2015 Feb 1, Spain said 400
African migrants tried to storm border fences separating its North
African enclave Melilla from Morocco and warned of a buildup in
numbers across the frontier.
2015 Feb 16, In Spain court
papers showed that a Granada court has dropped charges against 11
out of 12 suspects in the country's biggest ever clerical sex abuse
scandal because the statute of limitations had expired.