One of Spain’s most wanted ETA suspects has been arrested after the biggest anti-terrorist operation since the armed Basque separatists called off their truce just over a year ago.
It followed a series of early morning raids in the Bilbao area in which seven other people were also detained. Arkaitz Goikoetxea is believed to have led one of ETA’s most active units.
Spain’s Interior Minister, Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba, said it is only a matter of time before authorities catch up with other culprits. “None of the ETA members are going to escape from appearing before a judge or from going to prison. Some of them know that, some of them don’t; But as soon as they understand this and surrender if will be better for us, of course, and better for them,” he said.
Other than where they took place, little is known about the raids but it is understood the others being held are not known to the police. Goikoetxea is thought to have led an attack on a police barracks in the Basque country in May which left one officer dead.
There has been a recent upsurge in ETA linked violence. On Sunday, ETA said it was behind a series of small blasts at tourist resorts in northern Spain. No-one was injured.