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Euskadi Ta Askatasuna (ETA)

Euskadi Ta Askatasuna (ETA) was a Basque nationalist and separatist movement which dissolved recently in 2018. Its name translates to "Basque Homeland and Liberty" and fights for the independence of the Basque country from northern Spain and southern France.

The ETA’s birth reveals a history of resistance to the government. The Basque Nationalist Party was founded in 1894 and survived illegally under the Franco era by moving its headquarters to Paris and staying inactive in Spain. In 1959, however, some members of the party were frustrated at the lack of an armed resistance. This led to the party’s split as some left to form the ETA. 1968 marked the first assassination of the separatist insurgency.

The group has been classified as a terrorist organisation by France, Spain, the European Union, the UK, the US, and Canada. This terrorist classification results from the engagement of the ETA’s paramilitary wing in bombings, kidnappings, and even assassinations. Between 1968 and 2010, the ETA killed 829 people — 340 of which were civilians. A permanent ceasefire was signed in 2011 yet the ETA only announced that it had given up all of its weapons and explosives in 2017. One year later, the ETA declared its complete dissolution on all domains.

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