May 21th 2024 | 12:04


Otxandiano tries to fix the mistake

Mairenis Gomez

April 18, 2024 | 1:07 p.m.

The delicate balance between forgiveness and politics in the words of Otxandiano

EH Bildu's candidate for Lehendakari, Pello Otxandiano, has generated a considerable stir with his recent statements regarding ETA. In a moment of palpable tension, the candidate has apologized to the group's victims, once again avoiding calling ETA a "terrorist." This gesture, on the threshold of the Basque elections, seems like an attempt to distance oneself from the electoral interests and move towards a more empathetic stance towards victims.

Unraveling the impact of the controversy on Basque politics

Without a doubt, Otxandiano's words have fallen into complicated territory. The lack of an explicit condemnation of ETA's actions remains a critical point in his speech, raising doubts about the true position of EH Bildu regarding the violent past of the Basque Country. Despite his efforts to promote “plural memory” and “respect for all victims,” the ambiguity of his statements continues to weigh on the minds of many, especially in a context where national reconciliation is both necessary and fragile.

Furthermore, Otxandiano, by recognizing that the steps taken by the nationalist left may be "insufficient", suggests a recognition of the need for more concrete actions and fewer ambiguous words. The promise to continue moving forward after the elections could be interpreted as a continued commitment, but it also raises questions about EH Bildu's real capacity and willingness to confront its past and lead a genuine change towards reconciliation.

The search for a reconciled future: between promise and action

Even Otxandiano's approach towards reconciliation and the construction of a collective memory in the Basque Country is ambitious. He alleges that EH Bildu is uniquely positioned to be an agent of reconciliation, citing as evidence the inclusion of people previously threatened by ETA on its electoral lists.

Otxandiano's words reflect a complex mix of apology and political strategy

This strategy could be a step towards the depoliticization of pain and towards a true politics of reconciliation. However, skepticism persists among those who see these actions as insufficient in the face of the magnitude of the history of violence and terror.

Ultimately, Otxandiano's words reflect a complex mix of apology and political strategy. By asking for forgiveness, he tries to close the gap between the victims of ETA and the coalition he represents. However, his reluctance to use the word "terrorist" and directly condemn the attacks reveals the difficulties inherent in politics in regions with troubled pasts. As the elections approach, EH Bildu's ability to navigate these turbulent waters could define not only his political future but also the peace process in the Basque Country.

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