Basque separatists appeal to ETA to maintain ceasefire

The leader of Batasuna, the political wing of ETA, Arnaldo Otegi, has requested that ETA respect and maintain the contents and objectives given in their statement on 22nd March 2006 which announced a permanent ceasefire.

In a press conference given in San Sebastián yesterday Arnaldo Otegi along with Rufi Etxeberria and Arantza Santesteban, other members of Batasuna involved in negotiations, asked that political dialogue be allowed to go ahead in the absence of violence.

Furthermore, Otegi assured his commitment to a just and long lasting peace between the Basque Country and the Spanish state.

Batasuna called for all political parties in Spain to participate in the negotiations without preconditions and with no further delays in order to form a solid multilateral base for political dialogue.

In addition Otegi urged both sides involved in the dialogue, ETA and the Spanish government, to publicly show their commitment to the peace process. He asked for central government to guarantee the conditions under which the peace process can proceed in order to find political solutions for the Basque Country.

He also urged ETA to maintain their commitment to the ceasefire announced on 22nd March 2006.

Otegi said he hoped that these requests would receive positive responses from all those involved allowing for the political process to continue in order to reach its final objective a peaceful political solution.