Monday, January 30, 2012

Estepan Urkiaga Basaraz

Estepan Urkiaga Basaraz aka Estepan Urkiaga Basaraz, but better known by his pseudonym Lauaxeta (1905 - 1937) was a Spanish Basque poet and journalist. He participated in the founding of the Royal Academy of the Basque Language . During the Civil War he was part of the Basque administration but was captured and executed by Franco's troops.
His early religious vocation led him to become a novitiate, but he left the church to devote himself to journalism and literature . He joined the Basque Nationalist Party , where he took charge of several publications in Euskera.
At the outbreak of the Civil War and the adoption of the Statute of Autonomy of the Basque Country, he worked with the Basque Government, dealing with propaganda and as Corps Commander, serving in Bilbao, where he helped hiding some priests fleeing the Republican territory. He was captured by Franco's troops, court-martialed and sentenced to death; shot in the cemetery of Santa Isabel de Vitoria two later, despite the efforts of the Basque Government to exchange him for a Nationalist prisoner.

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