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ETA’s political supporters are desperate to field candidates in the upcoming elections as a way of recovering a pro-independence voice in Basque politics.

ETA, the Basque-language initials for the Basque Homeland and Freedom movement, declared a cease-fire in September and went a step further Jan. 10 by announcing the cease-fire is permanent. The group also said international observers could monitor the cease-fire. However, it said nothing about laying down weapons and dissolving, prompting the government to say the cease-fire was not enough.

ETA is considered a terrorist organization by Spain, the European Union and the United States. It has killed more than 825 people since the late 1960s, but in recent years, it has been decimated by arrests of its leaders and operatives and by dwindling grass-roots support.