Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education

Front Page



UK Politics







Talking Point
On Air
Low Graphics

Tuesday, December 29, 1998 Published at 18:15 GMT

World: Europe

Basques choose their leader

ETA ceasefire: Opened way for key vote in Basque parliament

The new government in Spain's northern Basque region is meeting in the Basque capital, Vitoria, for the first time since elections in October.

For the first time it is made up exclusively of nationalist parties which favour independence for the troubled region.

Daniel Schweimler: the poltical background to the session of the Basque Parliament
Spain's two main political parties, the Conservative Popular Party and the Socialists, both of which oppose full independence, are in opposition.

A new Basque president is being chosen, who will lead moves to consolidate the ceasefire declared by the separatist group, ETA, last September.

He is expected to be Juan Jose Ibarretxe of the moderate Basque Nationalist Party (PNV) after ETA said it would support him.

With his election out of the way the parliament will be able to tackle the issue which has dominated the Basque region since ETA declared its ceasefire: how to consolidate peace.

The BBC Correspondent in Madrid, Daniel Schweimler, says no progress has been reported so far in secret talks between ETA and the government and the start of formal talks still seems some way off.

The PNV won 21 of the 75 seats in the assembly in the October elections, but needs the support of the 14 members of Euskal Herritarrok, the political wing of ETA, to lead the government.

Advanced options | Search tips

Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©

Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia

Relevant Stories

22 Dec 98 | Europe
Spain's ETA: No definitive ceasefire

03 Nov 98 | Europe
Spanish Government to talk to ETA

26 Oct 98 | From Our Own Correspondent
ETA interviewed: a captive audience

19 Sep 98 | Europe
Aznar returns for 'urgent' ETA ceasefire talks

17 Sep 98 | Europe
ETA communique: Highlights

17 Sep 98 | Europe
ETA's bloody past

16 Sep 98 | Europe
ETA: Key events

Internet Links

Basque Congress for Peace

Association for Peace in the Basque country

Spanish Ministry of the Interior

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

In this section

Violence greets Clinton visit

Russian forces pound Grozny

EU fraud: a billion dollar bill

Next steps for peace

Cardinal may face loan-shark charges

From Business
Vodafone takeover battle heats up

Trans-Turkish pipeline deal signed

French party seeks new leader

Jube tube debut

Athens riots for Clinton visit

UN envoy discusses Chechnya in Moscow

Solana new Western European Union chief

Moldova's PM-designate withdraws

Chechen government welcomes summit

In pictures: Clinton's violent welcome

Georgia protests over Russian 'attack'

UN chief: No Chechen 'catastrophe'

New arms control treaty for Europe

From Business
Mannesmann fights back

EU fraud -- a billion-dollar bill

New moves in Spain's terror scandal

EU allows labelling of British beef

UN seeks more security in Chechnya

Athens riots for Clinton visit

Russia's media war over Chechnya

Homeless suffer as quake toll rises

Analysis: East-West relations must shift