Adams to attend Peace Conference in Basque Country
Former Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams TD will be travelling to the Basque country in France tomorrow to take part in a conference on Friday as part of the Basque peace process.
The conference is scheduled to take place at noon on Friday at the Villa Arnaga, Route du Docteur Camino in Kanbo. Among others taking part will be former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern and Jonathan Powell.
Gerry Adams said:
“Sinn Féin has been supportive of the efforts to create a peace process in the Basque country for over 20 years. Since the achievement of the Good Friday Agreement in 1998, myself and other Sinn Féin leaders have travelled to the Basque Country and met political representatives from all sections of the Basque people.
“In October 2011, I was a member of an international group that participated in an ‘International conference to promote the resolution of the conflict in the Basque County’. At the end of the conference in Donostia-San Sebastian, and of our deliberations, the international group concluded that “it is possible to end, the last armed confrontation in Europe”. We called upon ETA to ‘make a public declaration of the definitive cessation of all armed action and to request talks with the governments of Spain and France to address exclusively the consequences of the conflict.’
“Three days later, ETA declared a ‘definitive cessation of its armed activity …’ and, in the years since, has put its arms beyond use. Last month, ETA apologised for the hurt that it had caused.
“There now exists a historic opportunity to put conflict aside in that region. There is an onus on the French and Spanish governments to build on these initiatives. Progress in respect of the treatment of Basque prisoners would be enormously helpful.”