VATICAN CITY, MAR 11, 2004 (VIS) - Following is the text of the telegram sent this morning by Cardinal Secretary of State Angelo Sodano in the Holy Father's name to Cardinal Antonio Maria Rouco Varela, archbishop of Madrid, for the terrorist attacks which took place this morning in the Spanish capital:
"Upon learning the sad news of the abominable terrorist attacks perpetrated this morning in the Atocha, El Pozo del Tio Raimundo and Santa Eugenia train stations in the capital which have caused so very many deaths and countless injuries among the citizens who were on their way to work, and which have so cruelly plunged so many families and Spanish society in general into sadness, the Holy Father wishes to reiterate his firm and absolute condemnation of such unjustifiable acts that offend God, violate the basic right to life, and undermine peaceful coexistence, so longed-for by ecclesial communities and by the noble people of Spain."
"His Holiness, while praying for the repose of the souls of those who died, assures the families who mourn the loss of their loved ones of his closeness. At the same time, he asks your Eminence to convey to them his deepest condolences and his best wishes for the speedy recovery of the injured.
"While encouraging the beloved Spanish people to continue with determination and without discouragement on the path of peaceful and serene coexistence, he invokes the protection of Our Lady for all and as a sign of his affection and hope, he imparts on everyone his apostolic blessing."
TGR/TERRORIST ATTACKS/ROUCO VIS 20040311 (270)