Photo: Eta Declares Ceasefire
The Spanish terrorist group has announced a definite end to their terrorist operations that started in 1968, in the midst of Francisco Franco’s dictatorship.
Terrorist organization ETA has announced an absolute ceasefire almost five decades after raising arms, seeking the independence of the Basque country.
The ceasefire came after six international VIP’s including UN General Secretary Kofi Annan and Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams, urged the ETA to cease their terrorist exploits, and establish dialogue lines with the governments of Spain and France.
Below, the full text of the statement:
Eta considers that the international conference that has recently taken place in the Basque country is an initiative of enormous significance. The agreed resolution includes all the elements for an integral solution of the conflict, and it has attained the support of a wide spectrum of the Basque society and the international community.
A new political time is emerging in the Basque country. We have an historical opportunity to find a just and democratic solution for the centuries old political conflict. Dialogue and agreement should outline the new cycle, over violence and repression. The recognition of the Basque country and the respect for the will of the people should prevail over imposition.
This has not been an easy road. The cruelty of the fight has taken away the lives of many comrades. Many others are still suffering in prison and in exile. Our recognition and deepest tribute goes out to them.
From here on the road will not be easy either. Facing the imposition that still exists, every step, every achievement, will be the result of the effort and fight of Basque citizens. During these years the Basque country has accumulated the necessary experience and strength to address this path and it also has the determination for doing it. It is time to look at the future with hope. It is also time to act with responsibility and courage.
Therefore, Eta has decided the definitive cessation of its armed activity. Eta calls upon the Spanish and French governments to open a process of direct dialogue with the aim of addressing the resolution of the consequences of the conflict and, thus, to overcome the armed confrontation. Thorough this historical declaration, Eta shows its clear, solid and definitive commitment.
Lastly, Eta calls upon the Basque society to commit to this process until freedom and peace are achieved.
Long live the free Euskal Herria! Long live Basque socialism! No rest until independence and socialism!
The media and the general public questioned the veracity and true intentions of the statement “The statement makes no mention of Eta’s victims and express no regret. Instead it pays tribute to those “comrades” who died fighting, or “are suffering in prison, or in exile” said newspaper El Mundo. Madrid residents were divided, some relieved that the ETA has taken a step toward peace, some profoundly skeptical.
A mere hour after the Eta’s statement was released, Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero addressed the nation on live television, hailing the triumph of democracy over terror.
“Today we are experiencing the legitimate satisfaction of the victory of democracy, law and reason,” the prime minister said. “A satisfaction that is stained by the unforgettable memory of the pain caused by violence that should never have begun and must never return.”