ETA hints at permanent ceasefire

20:03, September 26, 2010      

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Basque separatist group ETA said on Sunday that it could be prepared for a permanent and verifiable ceasefire in northern Spain.

Two ETA members made the remarks in an interview with Gara, a newspaper which is generally supportive of ETA.

"The objective resides in the democratic resolution of the political conflict ... that means we have to act with responsibility to everyone," they said, implying that ETA is looking for a change of attitude.

"It is important for all parties to be able to act in equal conditions in which civil and political rights have been established. It is important to deactivate the situation of pressure, inertia and violence," they said.

"ETA is prepared to take that step and also to go further if the conditions are created which allow that to happen," they added.

ETA called for a truce on Sept. 5 and issued a further call for negotiations two weeks ago in the face of skepticism from the Spanish society.

All of Spain's political parties have criticised ETA's failure to specify whether the truce was temporary or permanent and pointed out that the group's four previous truces had all been ended with a return to violence.

The Spanish government has so far refused to change the way it has acted toward ETA and has recently arrested nine members of a group with close links to ETA.

ETA's campaign for the independence of the Basque region in northern Spain and southwestern France has claimed more than 800 lives in the past 40 years.

Source: Xinhua


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