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Basque separatist group Eta declares permanent ceasefire

The separatist group has vowed to abandoned its violent campaign for independence and engage in peaceful dialogue.

Image: Eta video still

BASQUE SEPARATIST GROUP Eta have declared a permanent ceasefire, three months after calling a general halt to armed attacks.

On Monday, the group declared a “permanent and general, internationally verifiable” cease-fire, which is hoped to mark the end a 42-year-old campaign of violence in which 829 people have been killed.

In a video posted on the website of Basque newspaper Gara, one hooded figure said: ”Basque citizens should have a say in their future, without any type of interference”.

In September the group called for international mediation after expressing a desire to end the bloody conflict. Gerry Adams called the ceasefire a “culmination of years of debate, discussion and strategising among Basque activists,” which he believed had the “potential to bring about a permanent end to the conflict with the Spanish state.”

Adams added: “Many in the Basque country look to the Irish peace process for inspiration, and much of what has been attempted there in the last decade has been modelled on our experience.”

The group has vowed to engage in dialogue and negotiation, however there was no reference to Eta giving up its arms.

Reuters notes that Eta has broken ceasefires several times in the past and that analysts have seen previous truces as attempts by the organisation to regroup with a view to launching further attacks.

The EU classes Eta as a terrorist organisation.

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