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The CIA's revelations about the role of former Spanish prime minister Felipe González in the GAL death squads of the 1980s have reached the floor of the European Parliament. Specifically, the Catalan MEP Toni Comín attempted to ask the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs, Josep Borrell, about the support which the latter gave to members of the Spanish Socialist government who were convicted for their participation in the dirty war against ETA in the 1980s, when Borrell was also part of that executive. The intervention by Comín caused the presiding member of the European Parliament to switch off his microphone on the grounds that he was not following the agreed agenda. Eventually, however, he was able to finish his question for Borrell.

"With all due respect, but with all ethical exigency, I ask you: do you ratify your support for those responsible for state terrorism? Your answer affects not only your legitimacy to act as a high representative, but also the credibility of the Union as a whole to the international community," asserted Comín.


The Catalan MEP had explained that, this week, CIA documents had emerged stating that then-Spanish prime minister González had approved the setting up of the GAL state terrorist squads in the 1980s, and he recalled that in 1988 Borrell himself had publicly demonstrated his solidarity with interior minister José Barrionuevo and security undersecretary Rafael Vera after they had been convicted in one of the GAL court cases.

Comín asserted that it was essential for the EU's highest foreign policy representative to be able to credibly embody the Union's founding values, including the defence of human rights and democratic freedoms.

Portuguese Socialist Pedro Silva Pereira was presiding over the European Parliament at the time, and he cut off Comín's microphone to remind him that this issue was not part of the agenda of the day, urging him to stick to the agreed topics. However, Comín was able to finish his brief intervention and put his question to the former Spanish minister who is now the high representative of the EU abroad.

Borrell did not respond to the Catalan MEP's query.

At the end of Comín's speech, Silva Pereira insisted that interventions on issues that were not part of the order of the day would not be accepted.

Four Catalan MEPs representing JxCat and ERC, together with representatives of the Basque parties PNV and Bildu, have signed a letter addressed to all members of the European Parliament informing them about the dirty war against ETA terrorists in the 80s of which the GAL death squads were part, set up with the knowledge and approval of the Spanish government of the day, led by Felipe González.

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