Madrid backs politician accused of aiding ETA

26th June 2006, Comments 0 comments

26 June 2006, MADRID — The Spanish government sided on Monday with a Basque nationalist who is accused of aiding ETA.

26 June 2006

MADRID — The Spanish government sided on Monday with a Basque nationalist who is accused of aiding ETA.

Gorka Aquirre, a leading figure in the Basque Nationalist Party (PNV), must appear before the High Court on Tuesday accused of playing a part in the terrorist group's extortion racket.

Aguirre has been charged with the collaborating with a terrorist organisation. Another PNV member faces a lesser charge.

It follows the arrest last week of 12 suspected ETA members accused of organising the extortion racket over a 20-year period.

Aguirre is alleged to have met a member of ETA in April and was told by the terrorist group of its decision to end its extortion racket in the wake of the announcement of a permanent ceasefire the month before.

Diego Lopez Garrido, Socialist spokesman in the Spanish parliament, said his party was confident Aguirre played no role in aiding ETA.

The PNV said it was "dumbfounded" by the charges.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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