ETA duo arrested in Basque region

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Spanish authorities arrested suspected two members of the armed Basque separatist organisation ETA on Tuesday, the interior ministry said.

It said the operation was continuing around midday following the pre-dawn arrests.

Spanish media said the two brothers were detained in the village of Legorreta in the northern Basque region, and are suspected of providing weapons, explosives and other armed equipment to ETA.

Their arrest comes three days after a French policeman was wounded in an armed exchange in the Creuse region of southwestern France. A couple were later detained on suspicion of belonging to ETA.

The Batasuna party, regarded as ETA's political wing, has condemned Saturday's shooting as "unacceptable" and "completely incompatible" with a permanent ceasefire announced by the organisation on January 10.

ETA is blamed for the deaths of 829 people in its four-decade campaign of bombings and shootings to force the creation of an independent Basque homeland in northern Spain and southwestern France.

© 2011 AFP

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