Lorca family accepts opening of grave

18th September 2008, Comments 0 comments

The mass grave will be opened to provide a proper burial for victims of the Spanish Civil War.

18 September 2008

MADRID -- The Zapatero government's Historical Memory Law allows the opening of Civil War graves and the identification of their remains, but it provides no public funds for the process, leaving the matter to individuals.

But recently High Court Judge Baltasar Garzón ruled that public authorities must open their archives to researchers and supply lists of missing people from their districts, shifting the investigation’s responsibility to the public.

Amid the controversy surrounding this issue, a case concerning the poet Federico García Lorca is about to come before Garzón.

The family of a local schoolteacher, Dióscoro Galindo, one of those shot and buried alongside the writer, has applied to Judge Garzón for authorisation to recover their ancestor's remains, despite initial opposition from Lorca's relatives.

The author of “Poet in New York” was arrested and, with other left-wing sympathisers, shot in a ravine outside Granada in 1936 and buried in a mass grave nearby. But sources disagree on the location of Lorca's remains.

Lorca's family, which had previously expressed its wish that the grave be left in peace, will issue a statement Thursday accepting the exhumation process. "We are not against [opening the grave]. Even though we would rather it wasn't done, we respect the wishes of the other parties involved", Laura García Lorca, Federico's niece told EL PAÍS Wednesday.

The family hopes the excavation will be conducted responsibly and privately, and says the poet's remains will likely be left where they are.

[El Pais / Joaquín Petit / Expatica]

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