The Spanish government has said it will continue to hunt down members of ETA, even though the Basque separatist terror group announced a ceasefire. The truce, it said, cannot be trusted..
It was a similar story on the front pages of the newspapers too, with headline writers saying it was too little, and they’d heard it all before.
ETA has killed more than 850 people in its attempt to win independence.
Interior Minister Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba said; “ETA must lay down its arms once and for all. That’s why this communique is not enough, because it does not even meet our minimum demands. And we’re not going to change our anti-terrorism policy, not one a single full-stop.”
ETA has broken several ceasefires in the past – most recently in 2006 with a deadly bomb attack at Madrid’s airport.
“I heard the news with a lot of scepticism, like everyone I think. Let’s wait an see what happens,” said one resident in the Basque country.
“I’m not at all confident,” said another.“It’s not the first time they’ve said it, and it’s never true.”
And one man said: “Whatever, I hope they (the government) won’t ease up. We have to keep fighting the extremists to end this terrorism crisis we’re living with.”
The communique did not say why the truce had been called, but some experts believe it’s an attempt to boost ETA’s political wing before local council elections are held next year.