Last week, a delegation from the European Parliament made an official visit to Spain to seek answers about the 379 unsolved killings perpetrated by the Basque Country terrorist and separatist organisation ETA. The delegation included Vlad Gheorghe MEP (USR PLUS, RO) and Maite Pagazaurtundua MEP (Ciudadanos, ES) from the Renew Europe Group.
Ten years after the cessation of terrorist activity, many painful chapters remain without answers, including the hundreds of unsolved killings for which perpetrators have never been convicted. This legal injustice must be corrected, and any attempt to legitimise the ETA's indefensible activity must be prevented.
"It is essential that the European Parliament analyses this unacceptable situation, which continues to burden hundreds of families", explained Pagazaurtundua, Vice-President of the European Parliament Committee on Civil Liberties and former President of the Foundation for the Victims of Terrorism. During her time in the Foundation, Pagazaurtundua worked tirelessly with other victims’ groups to bring unsolved cases to light and advocated for a formal investigation and review of these cases by the Prosecutor's Office of the Spanish High Court.
Gheorghe, Member of the European Parliament Committee of Petitions, said:
“There is no way to bring back those who were killed by the ETA terrorist organisation, but we should spare no effort in bringing justice in the name of those who lost their lives. Even after the mission is over, the European Parliament will continue following this issue until those cases are resolved. Let us be very clear: a united Europe has no tolerance for terrorists, extremists, genocide and crimes against humanity, and we will not stop until all criminals are punished.”
The European Parliament delegation heard testimonies from victims of the ETA, victims’ organisations, judges, prosecutors and institutional and police officials involved in the fight against the terrorist organisation.
Photo credit: Michel Christen and Marc Dossmann, European Parliament 2021.