Spain Reinforces Burgos As Basques´ Trial Opens
By RICHARD EDER
Special to The New York Times
BURGOS, Spain, Dec. 3—The órnate, heavily guarded trial room of the Sixth Military District here was the quiet center of a political storm today as Spain began the court-martial of 15 Basques.
The Basques are accused in the murder of a provincial head of the Political Pólice, and their case has become a symbol of the continuing struggle between the Basque ethnic group and the central Government in Madrid.
There have been widespread protests and petitions against the trial, in particular against the use of a military tribunal, from whose sentence there is no appeal.
The northern provinces of Guipúzcoa and Vizcaya were jammed with pólice reinforcements that rolled in throughout the night. Perhaps 100,000 workers in Bilbao, San Sebastián and a dozen smaller towns were on strike to protest the court-martial.
A number of clashes, none especially serious, took place during the day. Tonight there were reports of a large demonstration in the industrial section of San Sebastián and of smaller demonstrations in Barcelona, Valencia and Seville.
As the trial opened the Government continued its search for the honorary cónsul of West Germany in San Sebastian, Eugen Beihl, who was kidnapped Tuesday. It is believed that the men who seized the
TRIAL OF BÁSQUES STARTS IN BURGOS
15 Are Charged in Staying of Spanish Police Officíal
By RICHARD EDER
BURGOS, Spain. Dec. 3—The ornate, heaily guarded trial room of the Sixth Military District here was the quiet center of a political strom today as Spain began the court-martla Of 15 Basques.
The Basques are accused in the murder of a provincial head of the Political Police, and their case has become a symbol of the continuing struggle between the Basque ethmic group and the central Government in Madrid. There have been widespread prótesis and petitions against the tríal, in particular against the use of a military tribunal, from whose sentence there is no appeal.
The northern provinces of Guipuzcoa and Vizcaya were jammed with police reinforcements that rolled in the night. Perhaps 100,000 workers in Bilbao, San Sebastian and a doren smaller jowrs were on strike to protest the court-martial.
A number of clasnes, none especially serious, took place during the day. Tonight there were reports of a large demonstration in the industrial sección of San Sebastian and of smaller demonstrations in Barcelona. Valencia and Seville.
As the trial opened the Government continued its search for the honorary cónsul of West Germany in San Sebastián, Eugen Beihl, who was kídnapped Tuesday. It is believed that the men who seized the 69-year-old businessman at his home are pan of an activist movemert seeking independcnce for the Basques,
The West Germán cónsul in Bordeaux, Christian Sell, has met with Basque exile groups in St.-Jean-de-Luz, just across the French border. notably with Telesforo de Monzón, an exile leader who has reportedly been suggested as an intermediary Hints of Disapproval
The leaders of E.T.A., a guerrilla group that has been the target of a long government campaign, have shown signs of strongly disapproving the kidnapping. According to Basques who have been in touch with the leaders, some of whenn are in Trance, they take the view that it may increase the chance: that death sentences with be imposed on the six defendants who are accused of direct involvement in the killing.
How strong a line the Government of Generalissimo Francesco Franco would take was not clear. The press has beer. allowed to give full coverage to both the kidnapping and the court-maartial, and some observers viewed that as evidence that the public was being prepared for strong measures.
A Cabinet meeting will be held tomorrow and time was speculation that it might decide to impose a state of emergency. A proclamation by the Civil Governor of Guipúzcoa today strongly hinted at such a course if the ferment continued.
Meanwhile, in Burgos a cold austere Cascilan city that was General Franco´s headquarters during the Civil war and is second to no other city in Spain in its loyalty tto the Caudillo and its abhomence of Basques, liberals and othen troublemakers, strong security
measures were taken.,
The 120 members of the publlo and the 30 or 50 journalists
allowed in the courtroom were seanched. During receses they were kept in a courtyard guarded by soldiers with submachine guns.
The 16 prisoners—it has been recommended thet one of them Maria Aranzazu, be set free and there is no change agair si her -sat har dcuffed in pairs facing the military judges.. Twenty-six gray-belemeted policemen stood behind them.
The defendants are accused of being active memebers or adherents of E.T.A. - the mitials stand for the Basque words "Basque nation and liberty" — and of carrying out a numbers of bombings, bank robberies and the distribution of clandestine propaganda.
Of the six accused of planning the killing of the police inspector, Meliton Manzanas, two and a half years ago, one, Francisco Izco. is tharged with the actual shooting.
The defense lawyers asked the presiding judge Col. Mandel Ordovas, a cavalry officer and forner memeber of an Olympic riding learn, to have the handcuffs removed. The colonel, a gray-haired man with a thin mustache, asked the lieutenant of the court guard if he could guarantee security if the prisoners´ hands weré free. He seplied in the negative, but they were loosened.
The first day was taken up with the reading of the first part of a 30.000 word surnmary of an investtigating officer´s report.
The choice of Burgos to try an organization that is an extreme but not totally unrepresentative manifestation of Basque nationalism was anprosri ate in a way. From the Basque point of view, at least, Castille and the authoritazion Castillan spirit have been trying them and finding them guilty for years.
The Basques, who live in the green hills and smoky towns quite differently from other Spaniards, aré independent passionately democratic and devoted to choir singing strennus exercise, the sea and their peculiar and difficult language.