Today, Kofi Annan, Chair of the Kofi Annan Foundation and former United Nations Secretary-General, and Gro Harlem Brundtland, former Prime Minister of Norway and Deputy Chair of the Elders, issued a statement welcoming the announcement that the Basque separatist group Eta has ceased to exist as an armed political organisation.
Kofi Annan said:
“This announcement marks a welcome end to a difficult chapter in Spanish history. Conflict is rarely solved through force of arms alone, and this news illustrates that political dialogue is the key to building lasting peace. While there is still much work to be done to heal the wounds and rebuild the relationships damaged by 40 years of conflict, this is an historic day which marks the end of the last armed conflict in Europe and should be celebrated across the continent.”
Gro Harlem Brundtland added:
“Today’s news is a victory for peace in the Basque Country and the whole of Europe. It was won through the determined efforts of the Spanish government and political institutions, civil society and especially the Basque people. The momentum for peace must continue with a focus on healing the wounds of the past and building a shared future.”