Unexploded bomb found under Spanish police car

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MADRID, Sep 14 (Reuters) Spanish police found a crude unexploded bomb underneath one of their patrol cars in the Basque Country town of Andoain today, police said.

The simple device, made up of a bottle of inflammable liquid and a firework rocket, was detected by municipal rubbish collectors, local media reported.

The find came after officials blamed Basque separatist rebels ETA for a large car bomb which also failed to detonate near a Defence Ministry office in the northern Spanish city of Logrono on Sunday.

The government broke off an attempt at peace talks with the guerrillas last year after they killed two people with a bomb at Madrid airport, and ETA declared an end to a ceasefire in June.

Authorities have foiled a series of planned attacks in recent weeks.

Polls show most Basques do not want independence from Spain, the cause for which ETA has killed more than 800 people. The group's four decades of armed struggle began during the dictatorship of General Francisco Franco, when Basque culture and language were repressed.

The future of the Basque Country looks set to be a major issue in next March's Spanish general elections, partly due to pressure from moderate Basque nationalists who want a referendum on independence.

Reuters SBC DS1635

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