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Spain set to release Basque separatist from prison after European Court of Human Rights ruling

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Spain set to release Basque separatist from prison after European Court of Human Rights ruling

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Spain has been ordered to release a Basque separatist militant. The European Court of Human Rights has ruled Ines del Rio Prada a member of the Basque separatist organisation, ETA must be set free.

She was due for release in 2008 but Spain invoked a ruling which allowed the courts to extend the maximum period of detention beyond 30 years.

Angeles Pedraza who is the President of AVT, the ETA victim’s association, called on the judiciary to reject the decision.

“We hope the judges will not accept the verdict. The Victims of Terrorism Association is not going to stop here, we have never taken justice into our own hands but we have no more patience,” she said.

The Strasbourg Court’s ruling said Ines del Rio Prada’s continued detention violated two articles of the European Convention on Human Rights and that she should he released, “at the earliest possible date”.

Groups representing victims of political violence called on the government not to comply with the decision.

“There has been a verdict in a specific case, but it is not a general ruling, so we must analyse the other petitions on a case by case basis and according to Spanish law. And that’s a task for the different courts to decide,” Alberto Ruiz Gallardón the Spanish Justice MInister explained.

Supporters of the Strasbourg Court’s ruling showed their backing on the streets of Bilbao. Today’s decision could lead to the release of other members of the Basque separatist organisation, ETA.

About 600 are currently in prison and of those 61 have had their early release cancelled under the ruling which is known as ‘The Parot Doctrine’ and has been in force since 2006.