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Heavy jail term for Basque separatist leader

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Heavy jail term for Basque separatist leader


Spanish judges have handed down a 10-year jail term against the Basque separatist leader Arnaldo Otegi.

The 53-year-old, who is already serving a prison sentence, was accused of attempting to relaunch an outlawed political group.

The party Batasuna was banned by the government in 2003 over allegations of links to the armed group ETA.

Otegi was a key player in tentative peace negotiations with the government back in 2006. The plan for talks eventually collapsed after a deadly explosion at Madrid’s main airport.

Weakened by police crackdowns, ETA has not carried out an attack since August 2009.

The group declared a unilateral ceasefire in January of this year.

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