Solidarity statement for Josu Urrutikoetxea who faces persecution for his involvement in the Basque peace process

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The National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) extends its support for the international campaign to stop the persecution of Basque leader Josu Urrutikoetxea who faces trial in Paris on charges based ironically on his participation in peace negotiations between the ETA and the Spanish state.

This wrongful act of the French government in apparent collusion with the Spanish state serves to diminish the credibility of peace negotiations as a viable method of arriving at a political settlement and the achievement of a just and lasting peace between parties in armed conflict.

The condemnable practice by certain governments that take punitive measures against peace negotiators is nothing new. The NDFP has also been a victim of this malicious practice by the current tyrannical Duterte regime in the Philippines. Two of important NDFP personalities who had been involved in the peace negotiations between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) have been treacherously killed by government agents and several more have been arrested since Duterte terminated the peace negotiations in 2018. This is notwithstanding an agreement signed by both sides, the JASIG (Joint Agreement on Security and Immunity Guarantees), that give protection to peace negotiators of both sides.

We can also point to the example of Colombia where FARC leaders and social activists have been killed and persecuted after a purported peace agreement had been reached.

We call on the international community to condemn this evil practice by certain governments and call for a stop to the unjust persecution of Basque leader Josu Urrutikoetxea.

NDFP International Information Office
Utrecht, The Netherlands

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