The joint operation between French and Spanish forces took place in the French towns of Brive-la-Gaillarde, Montpellier and Blois.
The operation took place in the towns of Brive-la-Gaillarde, Montpellier and Blois. Photo: EITB
French authorities say six suspected members of armed Basque group ETA have been detained in simultaneous police operations at three sites around France.
The Interior Ministry says the six were detained Tuesday. Unusually, the three sites lay beyond traditional Basque country in southwest France: Blois in central France, Montpellier near the Mediterranean coast, and Brive-la-Gaillarde, northeast of Bordeaux.
The ministry, in a statement, describes the six as "active members of clandestine ETA cells." The statement does not provide other details.
According to several news agencies quoting police sources, the suspects were identified as Raúl Aduna, Andoni Goikoetxea, Igor Uriarte, Julen Mendizabal, Ekhiñe Eizagirre and Kepa Artauz.
The same sources also point out that the suspects are part of ETA's logistical network, also known as Elosa, that would have taken on the responsibilities of the military network.
ETA has been blamed for more than 800 killings in a campaign for an independent Basque state in Spain and France. Waves of arrests by French and Spanish authorities have weakened ETA in recent years.
Thirty-seven people have been arrested since the armed Basque group announced the definitive end of its armed activity.