Spain raises terrorism alert ahead of elections

Spain went on maximum terror alert on Thursday ahead of the start of official campaigning in the country, in what is turning out to be one of the most fiercely contested legislative election in decades. The interior minister said that the alert would provide for a total mobilization of security forces, monitoring party headquarters, election meetings, public transportation, and other public venues. The rise in the terror alert was attributed to fears of an attack by the armed Basque separatist group ETA, and correspondents also say the threat comes from Islamist militants. The outcome of the last general election held in 2004 was altered by the morning bombings of packed commuter trains three days prior to the elections.