The Civil Guard details in charge of guarding several embassies in the centre of Madrid was changed first thing each morning. On 25 April 1986, shortly after 7.15 am, a Land Rover carrying nine officers left the Italian embassy on Calle Juan Bravo. On their way to the Soviet embassy, the vehicle stopped at a traffic light at the junction with Calle Príncipe de Vergara, next to the Nuestra Señora del Rosario maternity hospital, which contained 55 women and 60 babies at the time. At that moment, Antonio Troitiño, a member of ETA’s Madrid unit, detonated an explosive device that ETA had concealed in a car parked a few metres from the traffic light. The powerful explosion broke windows in buildings in more than four blocks and blew a large hole in the front of the hospital. The Land Rover in which the officers were travelling took the full impact of the blast: two died of burns, a third was blown out of the vehicle and killed, a fourth died on the way to hospital and the fifth died shortly after admission.
One of them was Alberto Amancio Alonso Gómez. Born in Paris, he was studying Law while at the same time working as a Civil Guard. “I cannot forgive them, ever; I am very clear about that”, said Hortensia, Alberto’s mother. After surviving the ETA attack at the Plaza de República Argentina on 9 September 1985, Alberto had said to his father: “Dad, my turn will come when I’m least expecting it. If they’re out to get you, they’re out to get you. What they want is to kill the uniform, they don’t care about the person in it.” He was buried in the cemetery of La Almudena. However, in November 1986 his body and those of five other people were disinterred by vandals. “I was scared. I thought it might have been something political. However, I realised that it was not when I saw that the niche next to my son’s, which contained the remains of his colleague who was killed in the same attack, had been left untouched. It was all so recent… Now I am really bad-tempered, really angry”, said the victim’s father in distress.