Buenos Aires, Argentina. “Gure Esku Dago” was born on June 8, 2013 in the Basque Country on the bases of three ideas: “We are one nation we have the right to decide, and the future is in the hands of the citizens of this country.” The tenets of the initiative are based on the certainty that the lack of this right is the origin of the political conflict in the Basque Country and that it is a pre-politic claim, to create a democratic base that has always been a part of the political and social agenda of the country.
That is how Jon Camio, coordinator of the Diaspora participation explains the initiative. Camio says they want to provide an opportunity for this need that exists in society to support is legitimacy materializing in the right to decide. “Gure esku dago wants to get the citizens involved; to grow in numbers and organize personal commitments and work for social, union, political, institutional majorities aimed at the right to decide,” he says.
The Diaspora in Gure Esku Dago
The goal is to start to invite everyone to participate in the Human Chain that will take place on June 8th and will link Durango to Pamplona. On March 29th there was an important event at the Casilla in Bilbao that gathered 3,000 people including important cultural and sports figures, which expressly included representatives for the Diaspora to display the commitment of Basques and their descendants of various countries to the call.
The event also included the participation of Basque youth from the Diaspora including Kristiane Bizkarra and Olivia Bidaurreta from California who were not only present at the Casilla but also presented a video created for the occasion that shows the membership to the call from various parts of the world, including Basque club members in the US, Argentina and Uruguay.
[The video includes images from the Diaspora that were shown at the Casilla in Bilbao last Saturday, attended by Kristiane Bizkaraa and Olivia Bidaurreta]
Gure Esku Dago in the Diaspora
The organization of “Gure esku dago” was very enthusiastically received from the Diaspora since the beginning, achieving sponsorship from various European and American institutions. In this way, it has created a Facebook page (see here) where it has made contact and has informed people of its activities as well as sharing information, photos and videos that have come from various countries.
The organization is in favor of complementing the Human Chain that will take place on June 8th from the Diaspora and encourages replicating the Chain in large cities in the Diaspora, “like those that will take place in San Francisco, ‘Boise, New York, Buenos Aires and Santiago, Chile, to mention a few,” said Jon Camio.
In the United States
Camio refers to the NABO, North American Federation of Basque clubs that include US and Canadian clubs, that took place in February at the San Francisco Cultural Center where a promotional video of “Gure Esku Dago” was shown and was very well-received.
“With the support of entities like NABO, the Cenarrusa Foundation, the Basque Studies Program and various Basque clubs, we think that we are going down the right road. We want to, and are on our way to making the Diaspora one of the pillars of support that our initiative relies on among Basques in general", he said..
As in the US, Argentina has also begun to spread the activities of “Gure Esku Dago.” Without going further, some institutions will took the initiative and recorded videos of solidarity that were presented at the event that took place in Bilbao last Saturday.
According to Cesar Arrondo, collaborate of the community in Argentina, the promotional vide will be presented at the next FEVA meeting (federation of Basque entities in Argentina) that will take place on April 26th at the Laurak Bat in Buenos Aires.
Stand at “Buenos Aires celebrates”
Subsequently, and to inform and encourage people to take part in the human chain, 'Gure Esku Dago' will be at the “Buenos Aires celebrates” day, at the Observatory of Nations without a State stand, where it will explain the objectives of movement to the public.
In the same way, it will encourage a branch of the Human Chain to take place in Argentina that will complement the one in the Basque Country and which will, in the case of Buenos Aires happen on June 8th at the Plaza Congreso.
Arrondo also encourages Basque club in the interior and other countries to also participate and make chains in plazas in their respective cities and towns.