10 January 2007


Thousands of people gathered outside the Donostia-San Sebastian's Cycle-Track last Saturday as the Basque autonomous police blocked the entrance to the political event organised by the pro-amnesty movement.

Due to this prohibition, one more among the one hundred banned demonstrations on 2006, the pro-independence supporters started a rally with a banner at the front with the slogan "Democratic conditions for the Basque Country".

At the end of it they sat on the ground and sang the "Basque soldier"'s song. It was then when the police charged against the crowd. Some people were arrested and some others injured and brought to the hospital.

Juan Mari Olano, spokesperson for the pro-amnesty movement, said at the beginning of the rally that they wanted to launch a proposal for the democratic resolution of the conflict. He added that it is impossible to sort the conflict while one of the parts is hands tied and that repression can't be the answer. He praised the thousands of people who gathered for their brave stand for self-determination right.

More than 50 internationalists came from all around the world including a member of the Belfast Basque Committee to support the Basque process. When they where on their way to the rally the Spanish Guardia Civil (militar police) stopped them and kept them for an hour. It was then when they arrested Sebastien Dadouret, journalist from Paris and member of the international group. After three days on their hands where he was tortured he was put in jail and charged with "helping an armed band". Askapena, the internationalist organitation denounced this arrest as an attempt to criminalise the solidarity with the Basque Country.

A Inaki de Juana's letter was to be read at the event but as it was banned it's been made public during the week. The political prisoners who is been already for 65 days on hunger strike sent his greetings and strength and made clear his commitment to continue on hunger strike to defend the Basque political prisoners' rights. He wrote amnesty is an essential concept to the resolution of the conflict as the prisoners are a consequence of it.

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