Thursday, May 5, 2011

Live vigil for Basque voting rights

Update: around midnight it was known that the coalition has been allowed to run (the meeting ended soon afterwards).

Live vigil tonight at Bilbao (and Pamplona) for the right of Basques to vote freely this year in local and provincial elections. Banished coalition Bildu is holding this vigil tonight while awaiting for the decision of the Spanish Constitutional Court upon appeal.

Watch live streaming video from bildu at

Previously thousands demonstrated through the city
Further appeals can only be made before the EU tribunals, being a matter of human and civil rights and about the democratic qualification of a member state (Spain), but they may not decide in time for the elections.

Bildu is an ample coalition made up of Eusko Alkartasuna (Basque Solidarity, a long-lived social-democratic party), Alternatiba (a break-away group from the previous) and independents. All candidates have signed a declaration rejecting ETA's violence yet all lists have been forbidden because the Spanish judges have decided that some of their members were tainted, maybe because they took part in some political activity in the 1980s or 90s.

In other words: Spain is using its own ad-hoc law of political parties to make sure that Basques cannot vote freely: only approved candidates and lists can concur, the requirements being tighter and more capricious each day.

See also: Bildu[eu/es], news, gallery (Bilbao) and gallery (Pamplona) at Gara[es], Ateak Ireki[es] on the concentration at Pamplona.

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