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Sunday, August 29, 2010

Basque author on trial in Chile for supporting Mapuche struggle

Basque writer Asel Luzarraga
was arrested in December 31 2009 while making a graffiti in solidarity with the Mapuche struggle for land and self-rule. He was accused of "terrorism", specifically of planting two bombs in Temuko in December 2009, one of them when he was not in Chile and the other (not exploded) the very same day of his arrest.

In spite of the severity of the accusations he has been under home arrest (while simultaneously an order of expulsion has been issued as well).

There seems to no grounds whatsoever for the accusation other than being anarchist, solidarious with the Mapuche cause and possibly being Basque. There was a newspaper cartoon the other day that read: "everybody is innocent until proven Basque", funny maybe but way too real.

However the trial begins today.

Meanwhile the Mapuche struggle continues. Prisoners have been in hunger strike for many weeks already and are being force-fed by the authorities. Some may die soon. Mostly this struggle has gone unnoticed in the media, even in Chile itself. And that may be because, as Atilio Boron said, the Mapuches are not Cubans. Can you imagine anything like this happening in Cuba and not being first page in all the international media?

Well, if it happens in Chile, Mexico, Colombia, Morocco or Spain... it seems it is not news-worthy.

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