A demonstration had been organised for 14th April in Iruñea in support of the three young people who have been held in prison for almost a year and a half, and to demand they be given a fair trial. After a pub brawl with two members of the Civil Guard (Spanish armed forces), they were arrested and have been held in custody since then.
The judge has accused them of "terrorist crimes" and the eight accused will be taken to trial on 16th April: the prosecutor is requesting they be sent to prison for 375 years in total. Many Basque and international activists have denounced the young people's situation, amongst them Amnesty International. Its latest report states that Spanish justice's "use of anti-terrorist legislation is disproportionate".
The young people's parents and the support organization have asked people to go to the demonstration to be held two days before the trial. "We are sure the demonstration will mark a turning point in denouncing injustice and proclaiming freedom and democratic rights", they state.
Wide-spread Support on the Solidarity Tour
Solidarity acts have been programmed for before the demonstration. The accuseds’ relatives and friends are touring the whole of Navarre: they have visited Tafalla, Lizarra and Artaxona amongst other places, and there has been wide-spread support for their cause.
In addition to that, during the weekend of the 16th/17th there will be numerous acts, meetings, demonstrations and protests under the slogan "Ez da posible! ¡No es posible! It's not possible!"
A Civil Guard's Wife will be the Judge
The trial in Madrid will be presided by judge Concepción Espegel. The young people's defence has recused judge Espegel to the Spanish National Court because her husband is a Civil Guard and because she herslef has been given medals by the Civil Guard. However, the request has been denied.
In fact, Espegel has just sentenced Mallorca rapper Valtonyc to three and a half years because he "praises terrorism" and libels the Spanish monarchy in his songs.
On 14 April the biggest demonstration in Iruñea for a long time was held in support of the ten young people from Altsasu, Navarre, who are going to be tried in Madrid. Some people thought it was the biggest demonstration ever held there: the municipal police state that 38,000 people took part, while the organizers say that 50,000 did. Claiming that a brawl in which they took part was "terrorism", the prosecutor has called for them each to be imprisoned between 50 and 62 years.
“After taking part in a four-year long process, we have opened a new playground at our school. It will give boys and girls the same opportunities, they will be surrounded by nature and it has come from their dreams." This is now the new playground at Kurutziaga School at Durango, Bizkaia, has been described. It will be officially opened on 24th April.
After making preparatives over the last few months, BiziLagunEkin ('with our neighbours') platform has been set up in Donostia. "The current model of tourism in the city concerns us. We are a meeting place for people from different ideologies and ways of life. What brings us together is a concern about the consequences of tourism in our city on local people's lives".
The Government of Navarre (Basque Country) has decided to offer public health care to the people who have been excluded from it; for instance, immigrants without documents.
A pension of less than 1,080 Euros. That is the figure which the Pentsionistak Martxan (Pensioners on the March) platform has set forward as the lowest dignified pension, and on 17th March tens of thousands of people demonstrated in the main Basque cities in support. The people furthest from that objective in the Basque Autonomous Community (Araba, Bizkaia and Gipuzkoa) are women.
In 2017 somebody at Sarriguren (in the Iruñea area of Navarre) suggested that part of the town's participative budget be used to create a natural wooded area along the canal there.
The Basque Country Feminist Movement has given its first evaluation of the day. They underline that it was "a complete success", as can be seen in the photographs. They see the strike's success as turning point, and say it is time to take real measures "once and for all". According to the feminist movement, 230,000 women demonstrated in the Basque Country on the day.
Over recent years the FCC company has been in charge of keeping the streets of Hernani (Gipuzkoa) clean, just as in many other Basque towns. But from May onwards Hernani's own Garbitania public service will be doing that. Votes from EH Bildu and Orain Hernani (Podemos) passed switching the service from the private sector back to the public sector.
Basque political prisoner Xabier Rey Urmeneta has died in Puerto de Santa Maria Prison (Cadiz, Spain), more than 1,000 kilometres from his home in Iruñea.
Last Saturday the anti-incinerator movement organised a mass demonstration in Donostia-San Sebastian (Basque Country). They gave the provincial government and its leader, Markel Olano, a message: "Use your energy recycling, not just burning refuse".