Civil Society representatives have announced that ETA will be disarmed by the 8th April. BakeBidea, a civil Society platform dealing with the peace process in the north of the Basque Country held a Forum in Biarritz last weekend.

The Forum was entitled “Disarmament at the service of the Peace Process” and counted with the participation of several experts and representatives of the Peace Artisans, the group of 5 people arrested last December while trying to put beyond use a number of ETA’s weapons.

Txetx Etcheverry, one of those 5 activist, announced to Le Monde, last Friday, that ETA has entrusted Civil Society with the responsibility of its arsenal’s disarmament and that on the afternoon of the 8th April, ETA will be totally disarmed.

The activist called on the French Government not to block the disarmament and avoid hindering it, as it had done on previous occasions. According to Le Monde, Civil Society representatives have been awaiting the commitment of the French Government to take ETA’s weaponry under custody, supervised by International Observers.

Basque Institutions, both north and south and Civil Society have shown their support to the process, which would include international verification to ensure that weapons are put beyond use. The main stakeholders in the Basque Country, including EH Bildu’s spokesperson Arnaldo Otegi have recognised the importance of this initiative and shown their support.

The Social Forum for Peace has been working on the issue of disarmament since January 2016, when the Forum organised its third edition in Gernika and presented in October 2016 a report titled “Implementation of the conclusions with institutional, political and social agents”, which covered the work done the members of the Permanent Social Forum in the previous eight months.

La Bande Pasante, an International Network of Critical Thoughts, Alternative Practices and Contemporary Creations, has launched a documentary by the title: “Peace now, a popular demand” To support disarmament and peace in the Basque Country, to explain to as many people as possible its necessity and to bring to light the repressive logics and the aberrant silence of the French and Spanish States. The documenatry counts with the participation of several individuals, including Pierre Joxe, former French Interior Ministers and endorser of the Aiete Declaration. The film has Basque, Spanish and English subtitles.