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TERRORISM

Five terrorists dead after second attack in resort south of Barcelona injures seven

Seven people were hurt and one eventually died of her injuries when "alleged terrorists" drove into pedestrians in the Spanish seaside resort of Cambrils early Friday before being shot dead by security forces, just hours after a similar attack in nearby Barcelona.

Five terrorists dead after second attack in resort south of Barcelona injures seven
Investigators at the scene in Cambrils. Photo: Lluis Gene / AFP

The Audi A3 car rammed into people on the seaside promenade of the tourist city 120 kilometres south of Barcelona, where a van had earlier sped into a street packed full of tourists, killing 13 people and injuring around 100 others.

One of the injured in Cambrils was in critical condition and died of her injuries later on Friday, emergency services confirmed.

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Police carry out work on Las Ramblas where a van killed 13 people and injured more than 100. Photo: AFP

The five attackers in the car were shot dead, police added. Some of them wore what looked like explosive belts.   

“The alleged terrorists were in an Audi A3 and apparently knocked down several people before coming across a police patrol and a shoot-out ensued,” said a spokesman for the regional government of Catalonia, where Cambrils is located in Spain's northeast.

Markel Artabe, a 20-year-old restaurant worker, said he was on the seaside promenade when he heard what he initially thought were fireworks, but soon realised were gunshots.

He said he saw someone lying on the ground “with a gunshot in the head”. The victim's friends were crying out “help”, he added.   

Joan Marc Serra Salinas, a 21-year-old waiter, said he heard many gunshots.   

“And shouting. And more shouting. I jumped onto the beach and didn't move,” he said.

Police said they were “working on the hypothesis that the terrorists shot dead in Cambrils could be linked to what happened in Barcelona”.    

The driver of the van in the Barcelona attack managed to escape and is still on the run.

Four other suspects, a Spaniard and three Moroccans, have been arrested.    

In a further twist, the Spaniard was arrested in Alcanar, about 200 kilometres south of Barcelona and the scene of an explosion in a house late Wednesday that left one person dead and seven wounded and is believed to be linked to Thursday's assault.

“We suspect that they (the occupants) were preparing an explosive device,” Josep Lluis Trapero of the regional Catalonia police told reporters.

ENVIRONMENT

Why has the expansion of Barcelona airport prompted mass protests?

Around 10,000 people demonstrated against the expansion of the El Prat airport in Barcelona on Sunday.

Why has the expansion of Barcelona airport prompted mass protests?
People march during a demonstration against the expansion of the Barcelona-El Prat airport. Photo: Pau BARRENA / AFP

Several ecological and agricultural organisations, have demanded that the expansion be stopped due to the fact nearby wetlands and farms would have to be destroyed.

The demonstration took place on Calle Tarragona in the Catalan capital between Plaça d’Espanya and Plaça dels Països Catalans.

The protests still took place, even though last week, Spain suspended the €1.7 billion airport expansion project, citing differences with the Catalan government, after president Pere Aragonès said he wanted to avoid destroying La Ricarda lagoon, a natural reserve next to the airport. 

Environmentalists decided not to call off the march, in case plans for the airport expansion still went ahead.

READ ALSO: Six things you need to know about Barcelona airport’s €1.7 billion planned expansion

Political representatives from ERC, En Comú Podem and the CUP also attended, as well as the leader of Más País, Íñigo Errejón; the Deputy Mayor for Ecology of the Barcelona City Council, Janet Sanz, and the Mayor of El Prat de Llobregat, Lluís Mijoler.

People from neighbourhoods across the city marched towards Calle Tarragona and could be seen holding placards that read Nature yes, airport no and shouting slogans such as “More courgettes and fewer planes” and “Fighting for the climate, health, and life”. 

One of the largest groups of people were those from El Prat de Llobregat, the municipality which is home to the airport, who were led by tractors. 

People march during a demonstration against the expansion of Barcelona-El Prat airport. Photo by Pau BARRENA / AFP

In addition to protesting against the expansion of the El Prat airport, people were also demonstrating against the Winter Olympic Games in the Pyrenees and extensions to airports in Mallorca and Madrid. 

A representative of Zeroport, Sara Mingorría said “We are here to defend not only La Ricarda, but the entire Delta”. 

The philosopher Marina Garcés also argued that the expansion of the airport would mean “more borders, more mass tourism, more control and more precarious jobs.” 

The leader of the commons in the Catalan parliament, Jéssica Albiach, who also attended the protest, asked the PSOE for “coherence”: “You cannot be passing a law against climate change and, at the same time, defend the interests of Aena [the airport operations company]”, she said. 

She also urged the leader of the Generalitat, Pere Aragonès, to “definitely say no. 

If the airport expansion in Barcelona goes ahead, environmentalists say that CO2 emissions would rise by a minimum of 33 percent. These levels would surpass the limits set by the Catalan government’s climate targets.

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