Basque militant group ETA 'completely dissolved'

Basque militant group ETA 'completely dissolved'

In the letter, published by Spanish online newspaper eldiario.es on Wednesday, ETA says it acknowledges its responsibility in failing to solve the Basque "political conflict".

"The Basque Country stands before a new opportunity to definitively close the cycle of conflict and construct its future together", it said in a letter dated April 16 but published Wednesday by Spanish media.

"This is not the end of ETA that we wanted and, above all, is not the end of ETA we deserved", she said.

Its members fought for the independence of the Basque Country, a region located in Northern Spain and southwest France. "ETA can announce its disappearance, however, its offenses or so the actions of the judiciary wont evaporate".

"ETA has made a decision to declare its historical cycle and functions terminated, putting an end to its journey".

Zoido assured that there would be no "impunity" and "before and after this communique, they will be pursued wherever they are in order to be arrested".

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The last victim of ETA was a French policeman in 2010, and in 2017, the group announced its definitive disarmament.

"ETA obtained nothing through its promise to stop killing, and it will obtain nothing by announcing what they call dissolution", he told reporters.

Formed in the late 1950s amid anger over dictator General Franco's political and cultural repression, ETA killed 853 people over four decades, according to the Spanish interior ministry.

Violence escalated in the 1960s and Franco's regime responded in kind, as the group assassinated politicians and officials as well as bombing public places.

Some 300 ETA members are imprisoned in Spain, France and Portugal and up to 100 are still on the run, according to prisoners' families' group Forum Social.

At a news conference Wednesday in the southern Spanish city of San Sebastian, Covite President Consuelo Ordonez criticized a statement last week in which ETA sought forgiveness from victims "who didn't have a direct role in the conflict". But its move marks what is expected to be the last of several key steps towards the formal break-up of the once-armed separatist group, blamed for more than 800 deaths. It also apologised earlier this month for the harm it had caused to victims and their relatives. The militant group itself had hinted that a final declaration would arrive this week.

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