Court rules three Basque groups are terrorist
19 January 2007, MADRID — The supreme court declared on Friday three Basque youth organisations are terrorist groups for their links to ETA.
19 January 2007
MADRID — The supreme court declared on Friday three Basque youth organisations are terrorist groups for their links to ETA.
Jarrai, Haika and Segi were not just illicit organisations, but terrorist cells, the court ruled.
The court voted by three votes to two in favour of the appeal from the attorney general and the Association of Victims of Terrorism (AVT).
The appeal was lodged after a court convicted 24 members of these groups for membership of an 'illicit organisation' but not for terrorism in 2005.
But the ruling on Friday means 23 of the 24 will now serve six years in jail. Another activist, Egoitz López, was cleared.
The AVT said in a statement later: "We hope justice will never give in to blackmail and terrorist threats as the government of José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero is doing."
The conservative opposition Popular Party secretary general, Ángel Acebes, said it was "good news".
Police in the Basque Country were bracing themselves for some reaction from ETA supporters in reaction to the ruling.
Currently, political parties in Spain are split on how to confront ETA, after the separatist group ended its own ceasefire with a bomb attack on Madrid airport which claimed two lives last month.
Zapatero held a surprise meeting with the leader of the Basque regional government, Juan Jose Ibarretxe, on Thursday to discuss strategy.
But the ruling socialists and PP are split over how to confront ETA.
The socialists believe some form of negotiating could resume in the future, while the PP refuses to talk with the Basque terrorist group until they give up their arms.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news