Argazkia: Goiena.eus

On April 21, the citizens of Alava (excepting Treviño), Bizkaia and Gipuzkoa will have to decide once again the composition of the Parliament of the Western Basque Country (Basque Autonomous Community). According to all polls, that parliament will have a large Basque nationalist majority (currently that majority is at 70%). It is foreseeable that the political forces in favor of self-determination will once again be in the majority in the Parliament. Therefore, if there were political will, it would be possible to initiate a pro-independence process in this part of our country. A new Lizarra-Garazi pact would be possible. Will EAJ-PNV and EH BILDU take steps in this direction?

In our opinion, it is time to demand consistency. Time to work from a national perspective. Basque nationalist political parties should align their political praxis  with their theoretical objectives. In the same way that a feminist party should be required to carry out policies to advance gender equality, or a green party should be required to work in parliament on bold environmental policies, parties that consider themselves sovereignists should be required to take qualitative steps in favor of self-determination.

Our group Naziogintza, in view of the approaching elections to the Parliament of Alava (excepting Treviño), Bizkaia and Gipuzkoa, wants to repeat its usual request to EAJ-PNV and EH BILDU: that they also work on the national agenda. Without taking away any importance from social issues (public services, employment policies, housing, welfare…), national issues (Basque language, territoriality, self-determination…) must also be dealt with in the electoral campaign. Not doing so would mean taking the current political framework for granted, adopting an autonomist stance and forgetting that ours is an oppressed nation.

It would be frustrating for all Basque patriots and pro-independence people to hear  in the electoral campaign once again the same topics that could be heard in Cuenca or Albacete (Spain). The Basque national agenda must be present in this electoral campaign in the programs of our nationalist parties.

A leader of the Basque nationalist left recently asked to have “Strategic patience”. Unfortunately the border between patience and conformism is often very blurred. It is not fair to ask Basque patriots for “patience” when our nation is undergoing a rapid process of assimilation. A patient in the ICU of a hospital cannot have his treatment delayed by invoking “patience”.

We presented eight brief and concrete petitions to EAJ-PNV and EH BILDU, petitions related to national construction, for them to work on in the next legislature. To this end, we met with these political parties and have delivered the petitions to them by hand. They are as follows:

1.- To implement a new  Language Law to replace that of 1982. This new law, among other points, should give a differentiated treatment to the most Basque-speaking areas, facilitating, by means of a new regulation, the possibility of living there exclusively  through Basque.

2.-  To speak always in Basque in the Basque Parliament. Show absolute loyalty to the Basque language. It is a contradiction to demand the official status of the Basque language in the European Parliament and here at home to offer so much space to Spanish. Do the same in the Spanish parliament, always speaking in Basque.

3.- To analyze in depth the campaign of attacks against the Basque language that we are experiencing, to carry out campaigns to raise awareness among the population in favor of Basque, and to implement serious linguistic planning by applying effective legal instruments.

4.- Regarding territoriality:

– 4.1. To resolve the Trebiñu issue. To lay the foundations in the next legislature to hold a binding referendum. The same referring to Villaverde de Turcios.

– 4.2. To sign a political agreement with the Government of Navarre, to create a common political institution for both territories, which will promote joint work in certain areas: language and culture, economy, taxation, infrastructures, etc. as a first step towards reunification of  the South of the Basque Country.

– 4.3. Promote cooperation with Euskal Hirigune Elkargoa (agglomeration comunity of the Northern Basque Country) and sign collaboration agreements. Adopt a commitment to overcome the obstacles imposed by the two states for this collaboration (e.g., removing the obstacles for students from the Northern Basque Country to study at the University of the Basque Country).

5.- To approve a new political status in the next legislature. This political status, among others, will include the following points:

– 5.1. The right of self-determination of the Basque nation and the procedures for exercising it.

– 5.2. Its own judicial power for the Basque Autonomous Community.

– 5.3. In the field of sports, to develop the mechanisms for the Basque national teams to be able to compete internationally.

6.- To form a Basque Audiovisual Council for the whole of Euskal Herria, made up of experts of Basque national scope, whose purpose shall be the guidance, supervision and development of Basque Public Radiotelevision and other Basque audiovisual media, which shall work for the promotion of the national language and culture. It will be independent from political parties and institutions, and its decisions will be considered binding. The necessary money will be invested in Basque-language channels, with reduced funding for Spanish-language channels.

7.- In the new legislature, to prioritize collaboration between the Basque nationalist parties in the topics referred to the Basque agency. Although each party has its own proposals for social issues, in the national sphere (Basque language, territoriality, self-determination…) they should work together, taking advantage of the absolute majority in parliament to obtain political advantage. To take the Lizarra-Garazi Pact as a political model. It is clear that in order to do so, we cannot have as our main ally any political party that is against the Basque national agenda. This practice in force until now has led us to assimilation into Spain, moving us further and further away from our political objectives.

8.- Together with the previous proposal, to prepare a road map, which will also include the contribution of civil organizations, to exercise self-determination and achieve the Basque Republic in the medium term (since, according to their statutes, sovereignty is the objective of EAJ-PNV and EH BILDU). Concrete objectives require concrete planning.