France declines Spain ETA extradition

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France declined Friday to extradite a suspected militant of the Basque separatist group ETA to Spain, the man's lawyer said.

Stephane Daquo, representing Ivan Saez de Jauregui Ortigosa arrested in northern France in March with three alleged ETA accomplices, said the court in Amiens decided that the Spanish extradition warrant was too vague.

"The Spanish warrant was very badly done," Daquo told AFP. "It was very vague and broad, without precise details of dates and deeds, on which European jurisprudence is very strict."

Ortigosa was arrested in a remote French village with the man alleged to be the military leader of the outlawed group, Alejandro Zobaran Arriola. Procedures against Arriola and the other two suspects are ongoing.

ETA is considered a terrorist group by the European Union and United States and is blamed for more than 800 deaths during a four-decade armed campaign for Basque self-rule.

© 2011 AFP

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