ETA ready for verifiable, permanent ceasefire: report

25th September 2010, Comments 0 comments

The armed Basque separatist group ETA is ready to observe a permanent and verifiable ceasefire, the website of Basque newspaper Gara reported Saturday, based on interviews with two ETA members.

"ETA is willing to take that step and also to go further" if the conditions are right, the group's representatives replied when asked if they would be willing to commit to a permanent and verifiable ceasefire.

"The goal is to resolve the (Basque) political conflict democratically, to close the wound forever, and in order to do that we are all obliged to act responsibly," the ETA members told the pro-independence Basque newspaper, which often publishes statements from the group.

Earlier Saturday, ETA came under pressure from its political wing, Batasuna, to show its willingness to permanently renounce violence.

ETA, blamed for 829 deaths in a campaign of bombings and shootings to secure an independent Basque homeland, has released two declarations in the past month proposing an end to violence and calling for international mediation.

The Spanish government dismissed both declarations as they fell short of its demand for the group to lay down arms permanently.

© 2010 AFP

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