Thirteen of the 19 suspects on trial for the 2004 Madrid rail bombings that killed 191 have gone on hunger strike in protest of what they call unfounded accusations against them. Javier Gómez Bermúdez, the presiding justice, warned the men that if they continued the strike they could be expelled from court proceedings and force-fed. “The trial will continue in their absence,” he said. (The Guardian, May 17)
Earlier this week, the supposed al-Qaeda affiliate that claimed responsibility for the Madrid attacks, the Abu Hafs al-Masri Brigades, threatened to launch attacks n France in response to the election of Nicolas Sarkozy.