San Sebastian, Spain
Some 3,000 people defied a ban on demonstrations in the separatist Basque region of northern Spain this week, marching through the streets and demanding independence. The government has been trying to crack down on the militant group ETA, which has killed hundreds of people in terrorist attacks since 1968—including dozens this year. But a recent ban on the group’s political wing, Batasuna, may have backfired. The marchers this week included many Basque nationalists who say they deplore ETA violence but will not stand by while a political party is muzzled. “I don’t agree with ETA,” said local labor activist José Maria Larranaga, “but I also don’t agree with banning Batasuna. That is going to create a lot of problems.” Batasuna is the second-largest party in the region.
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