Sinn Féin MLA Gerry Kelly condemns Spanish arrests of leading Basque activists.
Sinn Féin MLA Gerry Kelly has stated that the latest arrests in the Basque Country, including those of leading Basque activists, David Plá and Iratxe Sorzábal, by the Spanish police, are a set back to the Basque peace process.
Gerry Kelly said:
"I am disappointed and seriously concerned regarding the arrests in the Basque Country. They are unhelpful and potentially damaging to the Basque Peace process.
"There has been international endorsement of the strategy for peace regarding the Basque conflict through initiatives like the Aiete declaration and the verification of arms being put beyond use.
"Repression failed in the past, continued repression will continue to fail. The way forward is the commencement of a process of inclusive, meaningful dialogue between the Spanish Government and the Basque representatives'.
"The Spanish Government needs to shift it's current policy of obstruction that is diminishing this historical opportunity and instead promote and support a process of dialogue to achieve a just and lasting peace in the Basque Country."