Luis Cobo, Luis Montero and Juan Mañas, who were tortured and murdered by the Civil Guard in 1981 when they were heading to a communion in Almería after being mistaken for an alleged ETA command, will have a monument of tribute in Santander by the Cantabrian artist Nacho Zubelzu and on the initiative of the collective for the recovery of historical memory Desmemoriados, which has been claiming their case for several years so that these three young people are considered victims of State terrorism.
“It is a case of State terrorism”
This was announced this Wednesday by the members of Desmemoriados in an act together with the Vice President of Cantabria and Minister of Universities, Equality, Culture and Sports, Pablo Zuloaga, and the General Director of Historical Memory, Zoraida Hijosa, which was held in the Central Library of Cantabria and where the last legislature was also installed a plaque that recalls that this place was a prison for reprisals during the Civil War and the subsequent Franco dictatorship.
“The victims of the Almería Case had neither truth, nor justice, nor reparation,” the historian Javier Merino, spokesman for the Desmemoriados collective, denounced during his speech, who also recalled how on the dates in which this event occurred they tried to cover up the facts by the Civil Guard to hide the reality and the guilty were prevented from paying their sentences in full before the courts, even using funds reserved from the Ministry of the Interior to compensate some of the agents who did go through jail as responsible for the murders of these workers based in Cantabria.
Merino has also pointed out that when 40 years have passed since the deaths of Luis Cobo, Luis Montero and Juan Mañas, their families have barely obtained recognition from the State institutions and the Congress of Deputies still does not recognize them as victims of terrorism, something that has been done by both the Parliament of Cantabria and the Santander City Council after the approval of both motions in recent years.
For his part, Pablo Zuloaga has stressed “the importance of recovering the memory of those who were robbed” and has considered it essential “not to forget what happened to prevent it from happening again.” For the vice president of Cantabria, “the young Spanish democracy did not know how to react in time to an event so atrocious that it took the lives of three innocent victims”, for which he thanked the Desmemoriados collective for their work, which will now allow them to have a space to remember for these three young people.
In this sense, Zuloaga recalled that in the coming weeks the Law of Historical and Democratic Memory of Cantabria will continue its parliamentary procedure, which will count for the first time with an item in the next General Budgets of the Autonomous Community of 2022. “We will take a step forward to settle an outstanding debt. We cannot allow ourselves to be dominated by hate speech that we already know where they are leading us, “he concluded.
The monument in memory of the victims of the Almería Case will be installed in the Plaza de las Estaciones de Santander, in front of the entrance of the ADIF station and near the southern mouth of the Pasaje de Peña. It will be discovered in a public event that will take place this Friday, October 15, starting at 7:00 p.m. and that will feature a wide representation of the families of the murdered young people.
Work of the Camper artist Nacho Zubelzu, It is a corten steel sculpture composed of three silhouettes of emptied spaces, identifying with the three lives that left. Through steel, the silhouettes testify to the permanence in the memory of those who observe them, to make one reflect on unreason, hatred and injustice.