The Belfast Basque Solidarity Committee has joined with Coiste na n-Iarchimí in a campaign that will see messages of support and solidarity at Christmas time sent to Basque prisoners, in Spain, France and the Basque Country.
Speaking on behalf of the initiative, Kevin Morrison from the Belfast Basque Solidarity Committee said:
“Each year the Belfast Basque Solidarity Committee send messages of solidarity to Basque political prisoners who are held in over 80 jails across France, Spain and the Basque country. This year we are very happy to have the support of Coiste na n-Iarchimí.
“Together with Coiste we have designed a poster which reflects messages of solidarity from ex prisoners from Ireland that also expresses the sense of community between those who face political persecution for their beliefs.
“This year has seen many more people enter prisons, especially in Spain and the Basque Country due to a large amount of arbitrary arrests of people in political parties, social and youth groups and journalists. While this has been a fact of life over in the past number of years, this year has seen a marked increase in arrests and imprisonments.
“We hope that the sending of these messages will in some way help ease the burden of those in jail over the Christmas period and let them know that people from around the world have not forgotten them.”
Adding to this Michael Culbert, Director of of Coiste na n-Iarchimí said: at
“Obviously from an ex-prisoners support group we have at first hand experience, of prisoner difficulties and the hardship and isolation they may face, but this can be especially acute at Christmas time.
“We are only too pleased to be asked to help out with this initiative and send these messages of support and solidarity.”