Europe

Authorities hunt for body of Basque militant killed in 1980

  • Police officers secure the site of excavations in relation to a missing Basque activist Jose Miguel Etxeberria "Naparra"' who disappeared in 1980, near the village of Labrit, southwestern France, Tuesday, April 4, 2017. French authorities are searching for the remains of a Basque militant Jose Miguel Etxeberria alias "Naparra." The search near the village of Labrit began after a former Spanish security agent reportedly told a journalist recently where the body was secretly buried, after decades of silence. (AP Photo/Bob Edme)

    Police officers secure the site of excavations in relation to a missing Basque activist Jose Miguel Etxeberria "Naparra"' who disappeared in 1980, near the village of Labrit, southwestern France, Tuesday, April 4, 2017. French authorities are searching for the remains of a Basque militant Jose Miguel Etxeberria alias "Naparra." The search near the village of Labrit began after a former Spanish security agent reportedly told a journalist recently where the body was secretly buried, after decades of silence. (AP Photo/Bob Edme)  (The Associated Press)

  • Eneko Etxeberria brother of Jose Miguel Etxeberria is pictured at the site of excavations in relation to his missing brother who disappeared in 1980, near the village of Labrit, southwestern France, Tuesday, April 4, 2017. French authorities are searching for the remains of a Basque militant Jose Miguel Etxeberria alias ???Naparra.??? The search near the village of Labrit began after a former Spanish security agent reportedly told a journalist recently where the body was secretly buried, after decades of silence. (AP Photo/Bob Edme)

    Eneko Etxeberria brother of Jose Miguel Etxeberria is pictured at the site of excavations in relation to his missing brother who disappeared in 1980, near the village of Labrit, southwestern France, Tuesday, April 4, 2017. French authorities are searching for the remains of a Basque militant Jose Miguel Etxeberria alias ???Naparra.??? The search near the village of Labrit began after a former Spanish security agent reportedly told a journalist recently where the body was secretly buried, after decades of silence. (AP Photo/Bob Edme)  (The Associated Press)

  • Police officers stand guard at the site of excavations in relation to a missing Basque activist Jose Miguel Etxeberria "Naparra"' who disappeared in 1980, near the village of Labrit, southwestern France, Tuesday, April 4, 2017. French authorities are searching for the remains of a Basque militant Jose Miguel Etxeberria alias "Naparra." The search near the village of Labrit began after a former Spanish security agent reportedly told a journalist recently where the body was secretly buried, after decades of silence. (AP Photo/Bob Edme)

    Police officers stand guard at the site of excavations in relation to a missing Basque activist Jose Miguel Etxeberria "Naparra"' who disappeared in 1980, near the village of Labrit, southwestern France, Tuesday, April 4, 2017. French authorities are searching for the remains of a Basque militant Jose Miguel Etxeberria alias "Naparra." The search near the village of Labrit began after a former Spanish security agent reportedly told a journalist recently where the body was secretly buried, after decades of silence. (AP Photo/Bob Edme)  (The Associated Press)

French authorities are searching for the remains of a Basque militant who disappeared in 1980 after new information emerged on his possible whereabouts.

A French judge, a forensic expert, and Jose Miguel Etxeberria's relatives were among those present for the search Tuesday near the village of Labrit in southwest France.

A recent anonymous witness account to a journalist reportedly prompted the search.

Spain's National Court reopened the case of Etxeberria's disappearance last year at his family's request, according to Spanish media reports.

Etxeberria, who went by the alias "Naparra," was a member of Comandos Autónomos Anticapitalistas, a spinoff of Basque separatist group ETA. He is thought to have been killed by a Spanish anti-terror group.

The search comes days before an effort to disarm ETA separatists in France.