On this last day of 2019, the Lehendaraki’s New Year’s Eve Address focused quite especially on the Basque Community Abroad.

Now of course, 2019 saw the 7th World Congress on Basque Communities, as well as the second Day of the Diaspora, which was intense and had a very special “warmth”. Even so, the fact that the Lehendakari has dedicated an important part of his message, the first half, to greeting the Basques all over the world is very significant.

In his address to the Basque community of the world, he not only remembered those Basques who are scattered all over the world but he also specifically described the plans and projects to increase and reinforce the ties that bind us all together as a nation, which has a very special significance.

We’re thrilled to include these messages in our blog, which has so many readers from outside our country.  We include both the written address, aimed at the Basque communities abroad, and the video, filmed at the Meeting House in Guernica and focused on society as a whole.

And we would again like to take the opportunity to hope that 2020 will be an extraordinary year for all, wherein we may all enjoy greater Happiness, Justice, and Freedom.

Urte Berri On!

The Lehendakari’s New Year’s Eve Address

Lehendakari NYE Address 2019

The Lehendakari’s Message to the Diaspora

mensaje lehendakari diaspora 2019

[In Basque]: Dear Basques Abroad,

During the Christmas and New Year season, I look back at a 2019 that has again shown off the ability of a Diaspora that always carries Euskadi in its heart to contribute to and share the Basque way of being and feeling with the whole world.

This year, we celebrated the second edition of the Day of the Basque Diaspora on September 8, and we organized the 7th World Congress on Basque Communities Abroad.  The slogan saregintzan, ‘networking’, has proven to Basque society that our Diaspora is a global community that makes us proud as a People and that helps us with its commitment.

Europe is currently experiencing a first-order migratory crisis, and it is necessary for our countries that make it up, big and small, to take measures to take them in and prevent hostility towards these people who are seeking a better life for their sons and daughters.

Throughout history, Basque emigration had its difficulties, but it also received a warm welcome from those Countries it was directed towards.  We can’t forget that “we all have an uncle in the Americas”, as Pierre Lhande said in 1910, but we also have “children or nieces or nephews” who are emigrating today, moving to Europe or Asia to gain international experience.

Having said all that, we have to say with sadness that we are not insensitive, quite the contrary, to the situation that is occurring in several countries in the Americas where thousands and thousands of citizens are suffering.

Humanity and solidarity make up part of our values, and that is why we are championing a single and positive response to the global migration challenge posed by the commitment to “offer what we would like to receive”.

Looking towards the future, we’re taking the first steps towards the creation of a Basque Diaspora Archive, a place which will allow us to know the migratory history of our People and which will serve as a reference for all the people who have ancestors in the Diaspora.  We’re also making progress towards a consolidation of the virtual network of Basques in the world and the ties that bind existing Eusko Etxeak.

The upcoming approval of the Four-Year Plan will open new lines of work and opportunities by paying special attention to the youngest and also the most disadvantaged members of the community.  In order to define and materialize these projects, we have an excellent asset, the Basque community that is present and integrated all over the world, always loyal and committed to Euskadi.

At Christmastime, many people and family return to the Basque Country, while others enjoy our Countries of Residence.  Through these lines, we share the warmth and happiness of your family reunions, and I pass on to you the recognition of Basque society for your work, along with my warmest wishes for this season and the New Year.

[In Basque]: Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!