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Basques march in support of ETA prisoners despite Madrid ban (VIDEO, PHOTOS)

Published time: January 12, 2014 01:53

Demonstrators hold up banners calling for the regroupment of ETA prisoners in Basque jails during a march in Bilbao. Thousands of people marched on Saturday behind a banner reading "Human Rights. The Way For Peace" in Bilbao January 11, 2014. (Reuters / Vincent West)

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Tens of thousands of protesters marched in the Spanish city of Bilbao, located in the northern Basque country, on Saturday to support imprisoned members of the Basque separatist group ETA, ignoring Madrid’s court ban.

A judge at Madrid’s top criminal court had earlier banned the rally, which originally called for prisoners to be moved to jails closer to their own homes. According to the ruling, the protests were being organized by a banned group.

People march during a demonstration called by several Basque political parties, trade unions and social groups in the northern Spanish Basque city of Bilbao on January 11, 2014. (AFP Photo / Rafa Rivas)

Afterwards, two major political parties from the region, the Basque pro-independence party Bildu and the nationalist PNV joined the campaign, re-labeling the protest as one around “human rights, understanding and peace.”

"This is a unique opportunity to show the world our desire for peace and the obstacles that the Spanish government is putting in the way," one of the protesters, Jose Mari Agirre, told Reuters.

The separatist group Euskadi Ta Askatasuna (ETA), meaning Basque Homeland and Freedom in Basque, stands accused of 829 killings in its crusade for an independent Basque homeland in northern Spain and southwestern France. Its most popular method of attack was car bombs.

In 2011 ETA announced a "definitive cessation of its armed activity” and called for direct dialogue with Spain and France.

There are about 600 ETA members jailed across Spain.

Spanish and French authorities have recently intensified their crackdown against the group, in an effort to weaken ETA through multiple arrests.

People march during a demonstration called by several Basque political parties, trade unions and social groups in the northern Spanish Basque city of Bilbao on January 11, 2014. (AFP Photo / Rafa Rivas)

Comments (4)

 

John Smith 14.04.2014 07:12

I hope this is the beginning of the end, for the corrupt US controlled European union.

 

Terry Mckinney 12.01.2014 09:19

More and more the people have to go against their governments to try to get a little justice.We all saw the way the US dealt with the occupy movement and how they didn't attack the tea party.You can protest.You just can't protest against greed.That's against the corporate law.

 

free gypsy 12.01.2014 09:12

Nuacht 12.01.2014 08:09

Great to see so many people out to support the basque people who continue to suffer at the hands of empiral spain and france.

  


tr ue!

but now NWO and globalist powers uses the separation trends in order to weaken national states.

the re is always an imperialistic interest of someone as long the human kind don`t get rid of hierarchical structures and learn to be truely independent.

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