Strike dents peace hopes in Spain's Basque region

A general strike paralyzed Spain's Basque region Monday when thousands of people stopped work to protest last Friday's death in police custody of a suspected separatist guerrilla. The strike, called by trade unions and political parties, halted factories and public transportation, and closed many shops, union officials said. After a weekend of violence by separatists, more large-scale demonstrations were expected in the region.

The new trouble also dented hopes for peace in the region following Madrid's promise of an autonomous police force and a visit two weeks ago by King Juan Carlos.

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