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Youth group leaders linked to ETA arrested

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Youth group leaders linked to ETA arrested


Spanish police say they have made at least 36 arrests in overnight operations against an outlawed youth group with alleged links to the Basque terrorists ETA.

Officers raided several locations across the Basque country and Navarra region in northern Spain rounding up suspected leaders of Segi, a banned terrorist organisation.. Madrid insists it’s determined to close the net on hardline separatists. Interior Minister Alfredo Pérez Rubalcaba said: “This operation fulfils three fundamental objectives in the struggle against terrorism. First, to prevent groups re-organising that have been declared illegal by the supreme court. This is the case for Batasuna and Segi. Second, to prevent an academy, and that’s what we’ve done with this operation. Third, fight against the urban violence that Segi carries out for ETA.” On Saturday, ETA’s banned political wing Batasuna called for peace talks, similar to those that took place in Northern Ireland, to start between separatists and Madrid. Batasuna’s leader Arnaldo Otegi, still remains in police custody after his arrest last month. But Spain is wary of dealing with ETA after the collapse of the last peace process. That only lasted a few months in 2006 following a bomb at Madrid airport, which killed two people.

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