The first permits have already begun to arrive to exhume the remains of Basque citizens of the Valley of the Fallen. As ETB has learned, the Spanish Government has begun to grant permits to exhume the bodies.
The decision comes just two months after the Government of Pedro Sánchez appointed the coroner Paco Etxeberria Advisor for Historical Memory.
As ETB has been able to confirm, National Heritage has recognized the right of the family Isart Lascurain to recover the remains. It is the first Basque family to see this right recognized.
“Symbolically it is a great step forward” for the family, and they hope it will help to get their grandfather out of the Valley “as soon as possible”. Apparently, the relatives themselves have contacted ETB, to notify that they have received a letter.
The relatives of David Isart Lascurain made the petition the last may. The reply from National Heritage reached them yesterday by letter.
Euskal Telebista has had access to said letter, where they recognize the right of the family to recover the body, yes, complying a series of conditions: first, that the place where the remains are found can be accessed; second, that they can be identified; and third, that it be a proportional process. To do this, the number of columbariums that will need to be moved and the characteristics of the identification process will be taken into account.
Isart Lascurain is the first Basque family to have received permission for the exhumation. The Francoists killed David Isart Lascurain, when he was enrolled in a work battalion in Lleida. Relatives recently learned of his burial in the Valle de los Caídos.
Another 18 Basque families They have already requested to be able to exhume the remains of the Valley of the Fallen, and are awaiting a response.
The Institute for Memory, Coexistence and Human Rights-Gogora prepared a report that concludes that in the Valley of the Fallen the remains of at least 1,231 Basques, of which 917 are identified and 314 are not, and that the “vast majority” were taken to that place without the consent of their families.
The historical investigation report concludes, with the data obtained so far, that at least 1,076 remains were transferred from the Basque Country to the Valley of the Fallen and that another 155 people of Basque origin or neighborhood were taken to that place in the Community of Madrid from different points of the Spanish geography, most of them from the provinces where the Ebro Front was established.
On the other hand, the Board of Directors of National Heritage agreed in October 2019 the actions that will be carried out in the crypts adjacent to the Chapels of the Basilica of the Holy Cross of the Valley of the Fallen to carry out 31 exhumations. This was communicated to the families of the people buried in the Valley whose exhumation requests are in process. Apart from that of the Aragonese Lapeña brothers, it did not materialize more. In the Valley there are 30,000 bodies buried.
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