Basque separatist group ETA apologises for armed campaign

Lawrence Kim
April 20, 2018

The Basque militant group ETA on Friday offered an unprecedented apology for the pain caused during its more than four decades of armed campaign for independence from Spain and France, and vowed not to return to violence.

In the statement, Eta said it was aware of the pain it has caused all of its victims. "We sincerely regret it".

It appealed for reconciliation and spoke of the "excessive suffering" of the "dead, wounded, tortured, kidnapped or people who have been..." "We really are sorry".

The group announced this week that it will be officially dissolved by the beginning of May.

"We have caused grave harm, which can not be put right".

The group asked for "forgiveness" for killing people without "a direct participation in the conflict".

The vast majority of Eta's fatal victims, numbered at 829 by Spain's interior ministry, were killed after 1975.

"I find it shameful and immoral that they should make a distinction between people who deserved a bullet in the back of the head or a bomb in their vehicle and accidental victims who did not deserve it", she said.

Both France and Spain, where the group committed most of its deadly actions, had been demanding an apology and that the group take a further step and disband.

Past year it went a step further and began laying down its arms.

It added that Friday's announcement was "nothing more than another effect of the fortitude of the rule of law that has defeated ETA with the arms of democracy".

"It should have asked for forgiveness a long time ago".

Now they hope to be moved to prisons closer to their families after the disbandment.

On Thursday, an worldwide mediator, Alberto Spektorowski, said that "failing a last-minute surprise" ETA would announce its dissolution on May 5 or 6.

"It will be clear that a chapter of the history of the Basque Country and of Spain is closed".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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