Jesus Mari Txurruka was to make his declaration at Bergara municipal court in Gipuzkoa last Saturday, the 20th of January. His grandfather's brother died in a Hamburg concentration camp in 1945; Franco's forces had killed his great-grandmother in cold blood nine years earlier at her farmstead at Elgeta in the Basque Country. But Jesus Mari is not going to make any such declaration. And nor are the other 13 victims' relatives who should have done so in January.
Maider Imaz, a temporary judge at Bergara court, accepted an accusation about Franco’s forces' crimes in Elgeta. Her historical decision caused a stir, being the first small opening in the Spanish justice system for the savagery of 80 years ago to be brought to trial.
But hope was to be short-lived, and full-timejudge Hugo Jacobo Calzon Mahia closed the case. The reasons were the same as always: The Spanish Amnesty Law of 1977 does not allow investigation into those crimes, and they are considered to have lapsed. The Basque Anti-Franco Accusation Platform believes that there was a “political hand” behind the change. Josu Ibargutxi, the platform's spokesperson, explained on the radio that all public prosecutors use the same, obvious "copy and paste" methods. Recently another court did the same thing with an accusation against the people who ordered the Durango bombardment in 1937.
The victims' associations have requested international agreements about human rights crimes be taken into account in order to overcome the Spanish legal wall, the former not having lapsed. Genocide is the deliberate elimination of a people, according to those agreements.
At Elgeta in October, 1936, the people in favour of the democratic republic were surprisingly able to hold up Franco's forces advance and form a front. Vengeance against local people was savage, with 33 townspeople being killed. Anttoni Telleria's case was one of the worst, who was raped while killing her parents before her; but all of those killings, fines and measure of repression were systematic and deliberate.
The killers are dying out, but the State's underlying responsibility is still there. The problem is that it is increasingly difficult to find witnesses and prove the truth as time goes on, and justice can only follow behind the truth.
Jesus Mari Txurruka got his great-uncle's watch back from Germany, where the Nazis had confiscated it in 1944. The glass was broken, but its hands still move forwards on the wall at Elgeta Memory Museum.
Informazio askea lantzen dugu ARGIAn, langileok gara proiektuaren jabeak eta gure informazioen atzean ez duzu sekula multinazionalik, bankurik edo alderdi politikorik topatuko. Gure ustez, burujabetza guztien oinarrian dago informazio burujabetza, ezagutzen dugunaren gainean pentsatzen eta erabakitzen dugu. Horregatik diogu kazetaritza independentea dela demokraziaren oinarrietako bat.
Aldizkaria paperean etxean edo e-postan PDFan jaso nahi duzu? Pozik hartuko zaitugu ARGIAko komunitatean. ARGIAkoa izateko, nahi eta ahal duzun ekarpena egin dezakezu, eta bueltan egoki ikusten duzuna eskatu. Indartu dezagun indartzen gaituena!
Begoña Zabala (Algorta, Basque Country, 1950) reached Iruñea in 1977 and was a first-hand witness of the police attack in the bullring and outside it. She is a lawyer by profession, a member of the committee for establishing what took place, and she has worked on the legal side of the matter. She took a very active part in the feminist movement in the 1970's, and has just published the book Feminismo, Transición y Sanfermines del 78 ('Feminism,... [+]
"I wouldn't offer somebody who's been arrested a coffee", former Spanish Civil Guard Manuel Pastrana said ironically during an interview on Catalan TV3 station, making an open case for the use of torture.
At a press conference held shortly before the 6th of July, work carried out throughout the year has been appraised by feminists and other social stakeholders in Iruñea (Upper Navarre), and they have noted that several declarations made over recent days about San Fermin have made that easier, while others have made it more difficult.
A Spanish court in Navarre (Basque Country) sentenced five men to nine years in prison for gang raping a teenage girl in 2016 in Iruñea, during the world-known Sanfermin celebration. Now they will be able to leave prison, after a controversial judicial decision. The bail of 6,000 euros imposed by the judge has generated outrage among the Basques.
Wednesday 13th June, Altsasu. Banners saying "Leave Altsasu Alone" decorate the balconies in the town. You can feel the pain, but no grief or resignation. To the contrary: the town's solidarity and strength is palpable. There are three or four locals having their afternoon coffee at Koxka Bar. 606 days have gone by since the brawl which took place there between some young locals and two Civil Guards and their sentimental partners. That is where it all started, on a market... [+]
Gure Esku Dago ('It's in Our Hands', a platform in favour of the right to decide) needed 100,000 people to form a human chain linking Donostia, Bilbao and Gasteiz. According to the organizers, 175,000 people came together to connect the three Basque cities.
"Damages, public disorder and threats" and "attacking authority" are the crimes which the Spanish National Court has charged eight young Basques with.
A member of the 'Ongi Etorri Errefuxiatuak' movement ('Welcome to the Refugees') has told Radio Bilbao that over the last three months no ships from Saudi Arabia have docked at Bilbao. Over the previous sixteen months they had loaded 455 containers. According to OEE, social pressure has made them use another port.
The Bizitza da handiena ('Life is the Greatest Thing') campaign was held in Donostia from 19th to 27th May. 63 citizens' movements and trades unions joined in with the "social struggle week" and proclaimed the need for a "citizens' capital". Different trenches have made up a single front. The anti-tourism protest got its message across, the World Tourism Organization holding its highest level meeting in city during the same week as the protest movement.
A year has gone by since Iberdrola electric company and the Basque Government cut the power on the Errekaleor district of Gasteiz. The project then became known to many people, and there was a huge wave of solidarity. Amongst other things, they collected € 10,000 to create their own energy system and now, one year later, they want to thank everybody who took part in the fund-raising on May 20th, which they are calling 100 mila esker ("A Hundred Thousand Thanks") Day.