Rome

2 Italians among 14 killed in Barcelona terror attacks (4)

Victims named as Bruno Gulotta and Luca Russo

2 Italians among 14 killed in Barcelona terror attacks (4)

Rome, August 18 - Two Italians were among the 14 people killed in two terror attacks in Barcelona and the nearby resort of Cambrils on Thursday and Friday, the foreign ministry said Friday. Three Italians were among the 100 injured from 34 countries, the ministry said, and two of them have been discharged from hospital. The first victim, Bruno Gulotta, 35, a hardware magazine marketing chief from Legnano north of Milan, was on holiday in Barcelona with his wife and kids. The second victim was named as Luca Russo, 25, a worker in a northern Italian dehumidifier plant on holiday with his girlfriend. She was injured and has fractures to the elbow and foot but is said not to be in serious condition. Both were from Bassano del Grappa north of Venice. The girlfriend, Marta Scomazzon, said "we were walking together and then the van hit us: I fell and I realised that Luca wasn't there any more, I didn't see him again, his body was swept away". Sources close to the family said Russo was "a nice boy, very simple" who had a three-year engineering degree. Gulotta's wife reported that he had been among the 13 killed on Las Ramblas by a van that ploughed into the tourist crowds. Gulotta made sure his kids were safe before being killed, the head of the Legnano hardware company he worked for, Pino Bruno, said. "They were walking along Las Ramblas with their two children, Aria, seven months old, and Alessandro, six, who his father was holding by the hand. "The van suddenly arrived. "They all instinctively crouched, to protect themselves," said Bruno. Gulotta shielded his kids and was killed. The mayor of Legnano, Giambattista Fratus, told a press conference that Gulotta had been killed while protecting his children. Police are seeking the van driver, an 18-year-old from North Africa named Moussa Oukabir. In a social-media post two years ago, Oukabir said "kill the infidels, and leave only Muslims who follow their religion". After the van attack that left 100 injured including three Italians, there was another van attack at Cambrils, a resort 70 km from Barcelona, where police killed five terrorists after seven people including a policeman were hurt. A woman died overnight in Cambrils, bringing the toll in the two attacks to 14. The Cambrils terrorists were said to be preparing another attack on Barcelona. Premier Paolo Gentiloni telephoned Spanish Premier Mariano Rajoy to voice Italy's condolences, friendship and solidarity over the attack, government sources said. Gentiloni stressed unity and firmness towards terror, which will never beat freedom and democracy. Rajoy assured the utmost collaboration with Italy and the other countries hit by the attack. Italian President Sergio Mattarella wrote to Spanish King Felipe VI, voicing "horror and repulsion". Spain and Italy were united in a "common pain" over the attack, Mattarella said. He voiced "great concern" over the "dramatic" attack, which was "further, execrable proof of the cowardice of the terrorists". Mattarella said Italy was determined to work with Spain, its EU partners and the whole international community, in a "fight, without quarter being given, against terrorism and all forms of violent extremism, in defence of the common values and democratic freedoms, as well as the security of cour countries". Pope Francis condemned the attack as an "inhuman act" and "blind violence, a grave offence to the Creator", in a telegramme of condolences sent to Barcelona Archbishop Juan José Omella y Omella. Francis said he was praying that the international community would work "with determination for peace and harmony in the world". Security in Rome has been heightened and checks will be made on any vehicles, especially vans, heading into the city centre.

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