Basque bishops urge ETA to reverse decision to break cease fire


The bishops of Bilbao, San Sebastian and Vitoria in Spain have issued a statement in response to the decision by the Basque separatist movement ETA to break a cease fire agreement, calling on the organization to “revoke its decision and announce a definitive end to its violence.”

In their statement the bishops called the decision by ETA to break the permanent cease-fire agreement “terrible news,” noting that the agreement was already breached last December 30, when ETA detonated bombs at the Madrid airport of Barajas, killing two Ecuadorian immigrants.

“We share the sense of frustration and pain spread throughout the populace,” the bishops said.  “In keeping with the feeling of the majority of our society and in defense of the fundamental rights of the person, we call on ETA to revoke its decision and to announce a definitive end to its violence.”

“Violence,” the bishops continued, “is contrary to justice, freedom and peace, and closes all paths towards them.  It should disappear without conditions.”

The bishops also recognized “the patient work of those who with honor and sincerity strive to keep open the paths towards peace and reconciliation.”

 Hope is a necessary element in the building up of peace, they emphasized.  “Those who endanger the path towards peace and undermine hope assume a very grave responsibility before society, history and God,” the bishops warned.

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