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Basque Terror Group ETA Dissolves Seven Years After Cease-Fire

Military training of ETA members in the Basque Country in Spain, on Dec. 19, 1978.

Photographer: Etienne Montes/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

Basque terror group ETA said it had dissolved operations, communicating in a final statement that draws a line under a campaign of violence that left more than 800 dead.

“We have made this, our last decision, in order to foster a new historical phase,” the group said in a statement carried by newspapers including Gara, a habitual channel for the group’s declarations. “ETA was born from the people and now dissolves back into the people.”

Spanish media on Wednesday published a letter from ETA saying it had decided to “terminate its historic cycle” and Thursday’s “final statement” represented its last word on the process.

ETA came into being in 1959. The group, whose initials stand for Basque Homeland and Freedom, took up arms to try to win independence for a new nation carved out of northern Spain and southwestern France, mixing radical nationalism with revolutionary socialism. The group laid down its arms in 2011.

“Nothing that ETA does or says will change the anti-terrorist position of the government,” Interior Minister Juan Ignacio Zoido said on Twitter. “The law must be obeyed and there can be no impunity.”’

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