The 6th World Congress of Basque Communities Abroad gets underway with the Lehendakari’s commitment to “diasporize” the Basque Country
- The “diasporizatu” (diasporize) slogan involves showcasing here the contribution that those communities make to the good name of the Basque Country from their countries.
- Kingsley Aikins, the expert on Diaspora, will give the keynote speech.
Lehendakari Iñigo Urkullu, the Basque Premier, has opened the VI World Congress of Basque Communities Abroad, which is taking place in Vitoria-Gasteiz on 7, 8 and 9 October. The congress is held every four years and seeks to recognise the contribution of these communities to the Basque Country’s good name abroad. The congress will showcase the work and the meaning of “diasporizatu”, the slogan chosen for this year’s event. “You are the ambassadors of the Basque Country abroad” stressed the Lehendakari, who undertook to “be your ambassador in the land of your ancestors, which is also yours”.
The Lehendakari recalled that the six congresses have deepened the relations of the 188 communities. This year, over 100 people from 22 countries of the Americas, Asia, Europe and Oceania will take part in the working sessions. However, the Lehendakari stressed that this time will be different as they will find “a new Basque Country” beyond the “distorting factor” of the past violence and terrorism. Today, they will find a Basque Country "with personality", linked to culture and that is open to the world.
Aikins, the father of the “diasporize” concept
Kingsley Aikins is the expert asked to give the keynote speech at the VI Congress. Born in Dublin, Aikins has a lifetime of involvement in the field of Diaspora and, in fact, he is responsible for the "diasporize" (diasporizatu) concept. After 21 years working at the Ireland Funds, he founded Diaspora Matters in Dublin, a consultancy company which gives advice on Diaspora issues to different governments, corporates and individuals.
In 2012, Aikins was the keynote speaker at the Hillary Clinton Global Diaspora Forum in Washington and in 2013, was the Conference Chairman of the Global Diaspora Forum which was held in Dublin.