Pro-independence Basque left calls general strike

Basque nationalists, or ‘abertzales’, are protesting against the “judicial, political and police repression” faced by Batasuna and its sympathizers.

There were doubts in the Basque Country this morning about the level of support for the general strike that has been called by the pro-independence left to protest against last week's banning of BNA and CPCL and the detention of several abertzale politicians and activists. LAB was the only trade-union to express its support, and none of the other Basque nationalist parties have revealed their position. Aralar was the only party to criticize the strike, which it considers "unilateral and lacking consensus". The Euskadi government has demanded respect for both strikers and non-strikers.

The police have so far arrested about a dozen people for disrupting road and rail traffic. There is currently no online edition of Basque newspaper Gara because of the strike. LAB has called for protests at midday in several towns across the Basque Country.


Arrests continue
Yesterday the Audiencia Nacional gave prison sentences to 11 of the 14 people arrested on Monday accused of "intending to reconstruct the new National Board of Batasuna." Separatist party Batasuna was made illegal in 2003 and the majority of its leaders are currently behind bars.
However, the judge decided to release the president of Basque Nationalistic Action, Kepa Bereziartua, on bail, together with three members of the Communist Party of the Basque Lands.
According to website, the Spanish Government has asked Strasbourg to reject the appeal lodged by Batasuna.


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