Edukira salto egin | Salto egin nabigazioara

Tresna pertsonalak

Eibarko peoria, San Blasa baino hobia
Hemen zaude: Hasiera / Blogak / Ingelesen hilerria / The English Cemetery / Is the Basque flag, unlike the Welsh one, prohibited in London 2012?

Is the Basque flag, unlike the Welsh one, prohibited in London 2012?

Luistxo Fernandez 2012/08/03 09:25

Officials at the Olympic venues in London 2012 are urging spectators to take away Basque or Breton flags, at least. They even confront the parents of athletes competing. It happened to a Breton man in a football match (fr), and to the parents of Maialen Chourraut, a Basque bronze-medal winner yesterday in canoe slalom (ca, screenshot from TV below). BTW, Chourraut lives in Catalonia and I don't know if incidents have happened with the Catalan flag.

Ikurrina kentzen Londresen

Well, this is outrageous. I plan to go to London next week, it's several months that I have tickets for me and my children and we intend to support Maider Unda, a Basque freestyle female wrestler, with our own flag, and with due respect, of course, to all other participants.

I have read the leaflet provided by the authorities: Prohibited and restricted items (see screenshot below as well). First, flags are not prohibited. Then, some flags are restricted, but with broad terms:

Flags of countries not participating in the Games (this excludes the flags of nations under the umbrella of a participating country such as England, Scotland and Wales)



Banderak eta Londres 2012

Well, if Scotland or England are nations under the umbrella of a participating country, I think we may understand that Brittany or the Basque Country are under the umbrella of these countries: France & Spain. The Basque Country has a regional parliament and government just as Wales or Scotland have, and it's flag is fully official in Spain. So, therefore, under which authority do those officials in the olympic venues take it away? Do they act similarly with the English or Welsh flags? I'm sure not.

On the other hand, it would be nice is someone explains the difference between prohibited and restricted.

We're carrying our flag to London. We don't want to confront anyone, no need to argue, no intention make a political symbol like the Mexico'68 Black Power stance. I travel with my children, we are going to celebrate the Games, and I cannot afford to be handcuffed or harassed or expelled in front of them. But I do want to salute our wrestler, and the rest of participants as well, with our Basque flag. And I believe that the rules the organizers have written are broad enough to allow that.

AboutBC dio:
2012/08/03 15:08
Gracias por esta magnifica información, la reproducimos.[…]/
idatziz dio:
2012/08/03 17:31
I agree that if English, Scottish and Welsh flags are not 'restricted', then on the basis you've mentioned, Basque and Catalonian ones shouldn't be restricted either. Otherwise it seems that they're making a special exception for the home nation(s), which surely contradicts the whole thing. However, seeing as some 200 countries are competing in the Olympics, are we supposed to believe that these stadium stewards have received training in recognising each and every one of the nations' official flags, and are able to instantly distinguish them from any 'non-official' flags? If not, how on earth are they going to know if that nice rainbow design represents Sao Tome & Principe, Nauru, Micronesia or some non-competing nation... So in the unfortunate event that you end up having your flag confiscated by some sanctimonious jobsworth, you could perhaps take some small comfort in the fact that apparently they know what an ikurriña is and where it represents.
Juan Inazio Hartsuaga
Juan Inazio Hartsuaga dio:
2012/08/04 14:05
Can I wave a Snoopy flag? Is it prohibited or restricted? Now seriously it's UNBELIEVABLE that such a dictatorial behaviour may happen in the U.K. Shame on those that make it possible.
Asier dio:
2012/08/05 14:28
The Ikurrina or Basque flag is in fact allowed at the Olympic Games.

When I read the news about Mailaen's family I was shocked in disbelief. So I called the Olympic helpline and a volunteer stated that the exclusion rule regarding flags "only applied to hosting nations such as England, Scotland and Wales".

I read back to him the only reference to flags that appears on the restricted items list of LOCOG (London Olympic Games Organizing Committee). The rules are very clear and they never mention 'hosting nations'…

–Flags of countries not participating
in the Games (this excludes the
flags of nations under the umbrella
of a participating country such as
England, Scotland and Wales)

He still argued that the ikurrina is not allowed because in his words "the Basque Country is a separatist Country"!! When I explained that Scotland want independence from the UK and will have a referendum for independence in 2014 he went on… "the Basques have been fighting Spain for many years".

Faced with this sectarian nonsense, we contacted LOCOG's press office. They were very clear about the interpretation of their rules and emailed us a specific authorisation with allows anyone to display the Basque flag at London's 2012 Olympic games.

Download here, print out and bring it along with your ikurrina to the games. Then if any misinformed volunteer or any Spanish official tells you to put away, show them the authorisation from the organisers of the games, and have a great time.
asier dio:
2012/08/06 14:06
Eskerrik asko egindako ahaleginagatik!!!!!!!!!
Asier dio:
2012/08/07 21:45
My pleasure. Euskal Herria aurrera!!!!
Luistxo dio:
2012/08/18 06:52
Back from London, I must say that we had no problem at all with the Basque flag. We could support Maider Unda and enjoy her matches. Very much indeed, as she grabbed a bronze medal. The flags and our Iron Maider t-shirts as well caught the attention of more than one, and we explained to anyone that asked. Great time for my children in London, there was a great atmosphere.
Iruzkina gehitu

Erantzuna formulario hau betez utzi dezakezu. Formatua testu arruntarena da. Web eta e-posta helbideak automatikoki klikagarri agertuko dira.

Galdera: Zenbat dira hogei ken bi? (idatzi zenbakiz)

Luistxo works in CodeSyntax, tweets as @Luistxo and tries to manage the automated newssite Niagarank. This Cemetery is part of a distributed multilingual blog (?!). These are the Basque and Spanish versions:

Ingelesen hilerria

El cementerio de los ingleses


Subscribe to the Cemetery: RSS entries / RSS comments | By email.

My cultural consumption in English: 2012/13 | Television | Movies | Books

Creative Commons by-sa