Basque Militants ETA Declare Ceasefire

The group intends to use 'a democratic process'
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 5, 2010 5:50 AM CDT
A banner painted with two masked men holding guns celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the Basque armed group ETA, hang during the goose festival in the Basque town of Lekeito, Sept. 6, 2009.   (AP Photo/Alvaro Barrientos)
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(Newser) – Basque separatist group ETA has announced a ceasefire, the BBC reports. The armed group, considered terrorists by many, has led a campaign for Basque independence that resulted in more than 820 deaths over the past 40 years. After previous statements by the Spanish government that it will not negotiate with the group unless it renounces violence, ETA issued a video declaring its intent "to put in motion a democratic process."

The group will no longer "carry out armed actions" as it campaigns for independence, three representatives say in the video. Leading members of the group have been arrested recently as more Basque political parties have called for a ceasefire. This is ETA's third ceasefire; the previous two were eventually abandoned. The BBC has excerpts from the video here.

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