Jean-Claude Trichet, president of the European Central Bank, said political pressures were not a factor in the ECB's decision to buy government bonds. "We are fiercely and totally independent," he said. Central banks are purchasing government bonds issued by Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece and Spain, AFME said. "We're very pleased that the ECB has intervened in this way," said Sander Schol, director of the European Primary Dealers Association, which is part of AFME. "The [central] bank and the politicians listened to what the dealers were saying and took exactly the kind of rapid, decisive action that was needed to avert a crisis."