Thousands of workers marched through Lisbon on Friday to demonstrate over the escape of 89 former members of P.
Thousands of workers marched through Lisbon on Friday to demonstrate over the escape of 89 former members of P.I.D.E., the Portuguese secret police. The men escaped from what was said to be maximum security prison 45 miles (72 kilometres) north of Lisbon. Twenty nine were recaptured but the remainder are thought to be heading towards Spain.
The escape aroused widespread criticism. It is thought there are about 12-hundred former P.I.D.E members now in Portuguese prison. They were imprisoned after last year's revolution while the now rulers decided what to do with them.
Many questions are being asked about the escape. Strict security measures had been installed at the prison but one closed circuit television was not working.... and the military security force, Copcon, did not join in the hunt until 16 hours after the men had climbed over a wall to freedom. The escape was made in daylight and it is known it took the escapers four and half hours for all to clear the fence. They used a nylon rope-ladder with iron bed-struts as steps.
The demonstrators in Lisbon carried banners demanding a full investigation into the escape. They also called for workers tribunals to be set up to judge the former PI.D.E members still in prison. The route of their march took them past the Catholic radio station...centre of the latest confrontation between the military rulers and the remnants of pre-revolution days....and the Lisbon newspaper, Republica, which has been taken over by procommunist printers.