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Last Updated: Monday, 15 March, 2004, 18:39 GMT
Spain victor in his own words

Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero
Mr Zapatero wasted no time before setting out his views
The surprise victor of Spain's general election immediately made clear he wants to change his country's direction in international affairs.

Here are excerpts from Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero's victory speech on Sunday night, and a radio interview and a news conference on Monday.

"Wars such as those which have occurred in Iraq only allow hatred, violence and terror to proliferate."

"The occupation of Iraq was ill-conducted and that's why I have said clearly in recent months that, unless there is a change in that the United Nations take control and the occupiers give up political control, Spanish troops will come back, and the limit for their presence there is June 30."

"Mr Blair and Mr Bush must do some reflection and self-criticism... One cannot bomb a people by chance, one cannot lead a war with lies, one cannot accept that."

"The war in Iraq was a huge disaster, the occupation continues to be a huge disaster: It only generated more violence and hatred and the lesson has to be learned."

"The military intervention was a political error for the international order, for the search for cooperation, for the defence of the United States...

"It divided more than it united, there were no reasons for it, time has shown that the arguments for it lacked credibility and the occupation has been managed badly."

'Change' in Europe

"(The election) will produce changes in Europe and internationally because the European divisions, in what was called 'old' and 'new' Europe, were possible because Spain, a medium-important country in the European Union, has an absolute subservience to George Bush's politics.

Spaniards... have always shown great maturity and great common sense when it comes to voting
Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero

[The election result] will obviously change a very important power balance in Europe, and... the international order will also change because numerous countries will feel much stronger and supported [on their views].

"And I think that the position of the Socialist government in Spain, will reflect on the American elections in November and on the fight between Bush and Kerry."

'Spaniards wanted change'

"My government, from day one, will try and I hope will succeed in recovering magnificent relations with France, with Germany and with all the countries of the European Union."

"My intention is to form a government alone and have dialogue and agreement with almost all the political parties."

"Spaniards... have always shown great maturity and great common sense when it comes to voting."

"In Spain there was a desire for change, because there had been a government that had done things badly... And it was not any change: it was a very clear, very emphatic change."

Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero
"The war in Iraq was a huge disaster, the occupation continues to be a huge disaster"

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