On the Fifth anniversary of the Declaration of Aiete, The Peace House again filled itself with drives and proposals to bring the resolution process to the end. With something specific and standing out: the Social Forum and a distinguished facilitator such as Brian Currin consider that there is a great option for ETA to begin a process of decommissioning with Basque society and institutions, monitored by the international community.

The Social Forum, which after three sessions has decided to convert itself into a permanent working network organized a public presentation of the report titled “Implementation of the conclusions with institutional, political and social agents”, which covers the work done the members of the Permanent Social Forum in the past eight months, from this past 30 January in Gernika they developed the III Social Forum around the axis of “Design, Develop and Culminate a Process of Dismantling and Decommissioning”.

In name of the Social Forum, Aizpea Leizaola and Agus Hernan have explained that this comes out of the contacts made in recent months to this respect, in which they have spoken with institutions, parties, all of the significant ones (with the exception of the PP and the UPN), trade unions … and they have also solicited a meeting with the representative for ETA for this sphere of resolution, Dabid Pla, a prisoner in the French state. They point out that they have perceived a high degree of consensus about the necessity of advancing towards decommissioning, “in a reasonable time”, with international verification and security.

Brian Currin, in his intervention at the end of the session, has added that he is aware of the will of the Governments of Lakua and Navarre to “participate” in the decommissioning process, for which he esteems that – in spite of the blockage from Madrid and Paris who have deplored – “all of the really important players are in favour”. He has also underscored that for once, “there are no elections around the corner”.

Going beyond the specific question of decommissioning, also from the Social Forum they have made emphasis on the excellent opportunity that this period means to put on the right track the resolution of all the consequences of the conflict. Hernan and Leizaola have preserved it putting as a starting point the constitution yesterday in the Parliament of Gasteiz and the beginning in January of the start of the unique community for the north of the Basque Country, and setting as the end of Spring of 2019, which is when the legislature of Navarre ends. The have called out the politicians directly: “Dialogue, please, until dawn. We don’t have time to lose”.

On the front line were, for example, Arnaldo Otegi, the leader of EH Bildu, and the president of the PNV, Andoni Ortuazar, who have spoken before the cameras before entering Aiete, and also they have exchanged impressions with the facilitators Currin and Albert Spertowski. Pili Zabala, of Ekarriken Podemos, has also been there, and a plural trade union representation.

The implication of the trade unions was manifested in the Permanent Social Forum which is beginning to work now, composed in a stable form by 14 entities and 14 personalities representative of Basque society. They count on the technical advice of international entities who already supported Aiete, such as the Berghof Foundation or Conciliation Resources.

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