Basque Info 29/09/09
• ETA shows total will for a democratic solution.
• Dead volunteers remembered across the country despite prohibitions.
• 25 Spanish fascist attacks claimed while authorities keep silent.
• Tribunal allows the display of Basque political prisoners pictures.
• Prisoners and extraditions.
-ETA shows total will for a democratic solution.
Last Sunday the Basque pro-independence armed organization ETA released the traditional Gudari Eguna or Basque Soldier’s Day’s statement. In it, ETA announces the internal debate started in May has already finished.
ETA reaffirms its commitment to continue with the armed struggle while the Basque Country’s enemies continue with repression and denial. At the same time ETA says their will has always been to find a political way out to the political conflict. ETA reasserts its will and total disposition to continue seeking this solution.
According to ETA in order to be able to reach a scenario of self-determination in the Basque Country a democratic process has to be developed. For that ETA understands that it’s absolutely necessary that all nationalists come together. ETA says it will promote that path.
ETA also addresses the Spanish authorities by saying “they repeat once and again that they won’t talk to ETA while the armed struggle exists. That’s not the conflict’s main knott! The Spanish authorities know that the problem is not ETA. They know that the problem is with the Basque people’s political will.” ETA goes on to say that by opening the doors to that will the conflict will be solved.
ETA asks the Spanish government: “In a scenario without ETA’s armed struggle, would you be ready to accept a process where all the Basques territories could decide their political future independence included?”
Finally ETA pays tribute to all dead volunteers and prisoners.
-Dead volunteers remembered across the country despite prohibitions.
On the 27th of September 1975 the Franco regime executed two ETA volunteers and three Spanish antifascist militants. Since then the 27th of September is the Basque Soldier’s Day. This year all commemorations were banned by the Spanish authorities and many of them had to take place in secret.
Hundreds of people attended the national commemoration in an unknown venue. Speakers thanked those who attended for the effort they put in. They came from across the country and had to take side roads and cross police check points to get there. The atmosphere was electric and the audience only stopped their chants and cheers when two dancers paid tribute to the dead volunteers and their families.
One of the speakers said that for the last 50 years the pro-independence left has been fighting to keep the Basque Country alive and that it’s needed to strength the pro-independence movement’s leadership and the struggle for independence and socialism. The speaker said the fight must keep on at this very important stage when new opportunities are unfolding. According to the speaker these opportunities appear now thanks to the sacrificies and efforts made by the dead volunteers and others.
Demonstrations and events to remember the dead volunteers were attacked by the police and there were many clashes with pro-independence activists. Six of them were arrested in Donostia/San Sebastian. In the same city but during the morning a rally was organised to remember the 30th anniversary of the assasination of local pro-independence councillor Tomas Alba. The speakers criticised the city council’s attitude of ignoring this case of the dirty war while they pay tribute to the so called “terrorism victims”. In Arrasate they remembered the 25th anniversary of Pakito Arriaran’s death. He was an ETA militant and then he joined the FMLN guerrilla in El Salvador where he died in the frontline against the right wing dictatorship.
In Zarautz’s cemetery the Basque-Spanish police prevented the relatives of Txiki, one of the 1975 executed ETA volunteers from paying him the annual tribute. The volunteer’s 80 year-old mother, outraged and visibly nervous, asked the masked policemen why she couldn’t visit her son’s grave. She asked them: “are you so afraid of the dead?”. Txiki’s brother said this was the first time in 34 years they had to suffer the police’s harassment.
Despite all bannings, threats and attacks, more than 50 events and demonstrations took place across the Basque Country during the Basque Soldier’s Day to remember the dead volunteers.
One small bomb exploded outside a bank in the north of the Basque Country, another one at a Spanish Labour Party’s offices in Lemoa and another one outside a Basque-Spanish police man’s house.
-25 Spanish fascist attacks claimed while authorities keep silent.
Last Tuesday a Spanish fascist organization claimed responsability for 25 attacks in the Basque Country. We have reported these attacks in previous Basque Infos and they include attacks against Basque pro-independence bars and private properties, dead volunteers memorials and death threats.
These attacks have been ignored by the authorities and nobody has been arrested in relation to them.
The Basque pro-independence movement denounced the authorities’ hypocrisy and lack of interest and said these attacks are part of the Spanish repression wave including dirty war.
-Tribunal allows the display of Basque political prisoners pictures.
Last week the Basque regional Justice Tribunal released a decision which allows relatives and friends to display the Basque political prisoners’ pictures in three events in Arrasate. The Basque region’s government reacted with anger as well as the pro-Spanish parties. They now threaten the banning of Etxerat, the Basque political prisoners’ relatives association.
During the summer the Basque-Spanish police has attacked and harassed solidarity events, arrested and indicted people and have taken down pictures. Just last weekend four people were arrested for wearing stickers with Basque prisoners’ pictures.
Last week also the Gipuzkoa’s province’s parliament passed a motion against the attacks against Basque prisoners pictures.
-Prisoners and extraditions.
After 17 days on hunger strike Basque political prisoner Aintzane Orkolaga was finally handed over to the Spanish police by the French authorities. In the end she was released and went back home where friends and relatives gave her a warm welcome.
Basque political prisoner Belen Gonzalez had to be taken to hospital after suffering an internal hemoarrage. Her relatives have denounced the lack of information from the authorities and they expressed their concern about they way she’ll be treated.
Basque political exile Mikel Barrios saw his extradition warrant rejected by the French authorities after being arrested three months ago. The Spanish authorities acussed him of being member of the pro-independence organization Segi but didn’t produce any evidence.
Next Monday 5th of October another Basque political exile, Arturo “Benat” Villanueva will attend in Belfast the first hearing of the extradition case launched against him by the Spanish authorities. They also acussed him of being member of the pro-independence youth organizations Jarrai and Haika. The Don’t Extradite the Basques Campaign has called a protest outside the court buildings at 2pm.