IMAGE: Romano Prodi
Yves Logghe  /  AP file
EU Commission President Romano Prodi survived a parcel bomb attack on Saturday.
updated 12/27/2003 2:40:16 PM ET 2003-12-27T19:40:16

European Union Commission President Romano Prodi opened a letter bomb at his home in Bologna on Saturday but was not hurt when the package burst into flames, his spokesman said.

It was the second attack on the EU’s top official in a week.

Last week, two small bombs exploded near Prodi’s home, also without harming anyone. A previously unknown anarchist group claimed responsibility for that attack, saying it targeted Prodi as a representative of a repressive “new European order.”

Prodi’s spokesman Marco Vignudelli said it was unclear who had sent the latest bomb.

“Prodi himself managed to open the parcel. The pack exploded with a big fire,” he said. “There were no injuries whatsoever. It was a small bomb.”

On Dec. 21, two small bombs hidden in trash bins exploded outside Prodi’s house in central Bologna. The devices — consisting of a cooking pot, a gas cylinder and a timer — went off within an hour of each other. No one was at home at the time.

Anti-EU anarchist group claims earlier attack
Later, a group calling itself the Informal Anarchic Federation, using the acronym FAI in Italian, claimed responsibility in a letter sent from Bologna to La Repubblica newspaper. Investigators said they believed the letter was probably sent by the culprits.

The newspaper printed excerpts, in which the group said it was a federation of several organizations that have carried out similar small attacks in recent years.

The European Union“Today we have hit at the apparatus of control that is repressive and leading the democratic show that is the new European order,” said the letter, which was received by the paper Tuesday.

It said the Dec. 21 attack was carried out “so the pig knows that the maneuvers have only begun to get close to him and others like him.”

Prodi lives in Brussels, Belgium, where the EU executive body is based, but he has been spending the Christmas holidays in his hometown in Italy.

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