Keyword: cubandissidents

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  • 43 arrested in post-papal visit Cuba crackdown

    04/05/2012 5:07:46 AM PDT · by nuconvert
    At least 43 Cuban dissidents have been arrested in areas near where Pope Benedict XVI visited last week, dissidents said Tuesday, as the United States urged their immediate release. "We have been able to confirm that 43 opposition members have been detained -- 10 women and 33 men -- in a crackdown on Monday in the Santiago de Cuba area. All remain under arrest," said Elizardo Sanchez, head of the outlawed but tolerated Cuban Human Rights and National Reconciliation Commission.
  • Castro defends crackdown 5 years ago, exhorts US to treat inmates as well as Cuba

    03/24/2008 9:27:03 AM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 5 replies · 354+ views
    AP ^ | 03/24/08
    HAVANA (AP) - Ailing former leader Fidel Castro made a rare mention of his government's crackdown on political opponents five years ago, defending the action and exhorting the United States to treat its prisoners with the same humanity he said Cuba uses with its inmates. "What an enormous difference between the methods of the United States and of Cuba!" Castro wrote in an essay published Monday in state media, apparently referring to how the U.S. government treats terror suspects. "None of the mercenaries were tortured or deprived of attorney or trial," Castro said of the 75 dissidents rounded up beginning...
  • Cuba: Communism on verge of collapse, says dissident

    03/23/2008 10:11:03 AM PDT · by george76 · 14 replies · 938+ views
    Prominent Cuban author and dissident, Armando Valladares, has predicted the collapse of communism in Cuba after the death of former president Fidel Castro. Valladares said that people in Cuba were tired of 'acquiescing to state terrorism' like others had in communist Romania, Czechoslovakia and Hungary. Valladares said that the young "sons of the revolution, are becoming ever more politically active... The author who spent 22 years in prison was in Italy to present a new edition of his most popular work, Against All Hope: a Memoir of Life in Castro's Gulags, in the Italian capital in Rome. He also critised...
  • More Cubans finding the courage to speak out

    12/09/2007 12:38:51 AM PST · by elhombrelibre · 37 replies · 126+ views
    MiamiHerald.Com ^ | 8 Dec 07 | MIAMI HERALD STAFF
    HAVANA -- Voices that once whispered are rising to a crescendo. Sylvia, a chemist and self-described socialist, vents that she feels betrayed by a revolution that ''enslaved'' her. Felipe, a carpenter, asks in front of his co-workers why Fidel Castro can come up with an idea one day and have it become law the next. Lisette, a nurse, tells a total stranger how the medical system has deteriorated since thousands of Cuban doctors were sent to Venezuela. Call it the law of unintended consequences: Since Cuba's interim president, Raúl Castro, called for public meetings to debate the country's innumerable problems,...
  • Dissidents freed as Raúl Castro signals change of tack in Cuba

    08/24/2007 8:42:48 PM PDT · by Lorianne · 16 replies · 1,045+ views
    Guardian ^ | August 25, 2007 | Rory Carroll
    Raúl Castro has started to make cautious changes in Cuba which could signal plans for political and economic reform. Since he took over from his brother Fidel, dozens of dissidents have been released, an olive branch has been extended to Washington and there is talk of easing communist controls on property and agricultural production. Three political prisoners have been freed in the past fortnight, the latest being Armando Betancourt Reina, a journalist jailed for 15 months after reporting on the eviction of a family in Camagüey. Analysts said Raúl, 76, who has been acting president since illness forced his brother...
  • Castro: Cuba may skip boxing meet due to defections

    08/08/2007 10:41:44 AM PDT · by The Bronze Titan · 15 replies · 576+ views
    Reuters - HAVANA ^ | Wed Aug 8, 2007 | Reuters
    HAVANA (Reuters) - Cuba is considering pulling out of the amateur World Boxing Championships in Chicago in October to avoid new defections by its boxers, Cuban leader Fidel Castro said on Wednesday. "Imagine all the sharks of the Mafia wanting fresh meat," the convalescing 80-year-old Castro wrote in a column published on the front page of the Communist Party newspaper Granma. "I must tell them: we are not keen on delivering it to their doorstep," Castro said, commenting on an attempt by German boxing promoters to hire two of Cuba's top fighters during the Pan-American Games in Brazil last month....
  • Cuba keeps more political prisoners per capita

    07/08/2007 7:23:15 PM PDT · by Graybeard58 · 2 replies · 219+ views
    Waterbury Republican-American ^ | July 8, 2007 | Frances Robles (A.P.)
    MIAMI The number of political prisoners in Cuba dropped by 37 in the past six months, but the island still has the highest number of such prisoners per capita in the world, according to a new report by the Cuban Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation. The report of a decrease comes as Defense Minister Raul Castro completes nearly a year as the country's acting president, and experts look for signs of new policies. But human rights activists warn against reading too much into the drop, because it was largely a result of the release of prisoners who completed...
  • Commentary: Cuba's lost population (Castro's real record)

    09/04/2006 2:20:12 PM PDT · by Clintonfatigued · 11 replies · 1,061+ views
    The Palm Beach Post ^ | September 4, 2006 | Liz Balmaseda
    Night was no time for rest. On the contrary, that was when the horrors began. At nine or so the executions would start.... Although we couldn't see the shootings from my galley, we could hear even the slightest sound. The still of the night and the echo of the pit made them even more pronounced." — Former political prisoner Jorge Valls,
  • With strong faith, seminarian stood up to Castro and was expelled from Cuba

    08/27/2006 8:16:20 PM PDT · by Coleus · 3 replies · 322+ views
    the Beacon ^ | MICHAEL WOJCIK
    With strong faith, seminarian stood up to Castro and was expelled from Cuba Cuban-born Enrique Corona, a diocesan seminarian, most likely has never heard of Richard Stockton, one of the America's Founding Fathers. Although separated by 230 years of history, both men have this in common - each of them put his own freedom on the line, enduring a prison sentence for having gathered up the courage to put pen to paper in voice of freedom.   At the dawn of the American Revolution, Stockton, a New Jerseyan, made the brave decision to sign the Declaration of Independence - an act...
  • Cuba’s dissident democrats stir as the Castros lie low

    08/20/2006 1:51:13 PM PDT · by nickcarraway · 8 replies · 574+ views
    The Sunday Times ^ | August 13, 2006 | Matthew Campbell
    A WIRY figure with dark, defiant eyes, Oswaldo Paya is not easily intimidated. His house is under constant surveillance and he has received numerous death threats. Most of his followers are in jail. Cuba’s leading dissident will not be deterred, however, from a campaign to promote democracy in one of the world’s last communist outposts. “It is time for change,” he said last week as the country struggled to adjust to its first new leadership in almost half a century. “The oppression and lies must end.” Behind its sunny, palm-fringed facade as a trendy tourist destination, Cuba was racked by...
  • Walesa becomes US' man in Havana

    01/22/2006 11:52:16 AM PST · by lizol · 6 replies · 404+ views
    The Weekend Australian ^ | January 22, 2006
    Walesa becomes US' man in Havana From correspondents in Havana January 22, 2006 US diplomats arranged for Cuban dissidents to get a pep talk from former Polish President Lech Walesa today in the latest chapter of Washington's long-running ideological battle against President Fidel Castro's communist government. "The system will fall because nobody believes in communism," said Mr Walesa, the founder of Poland's Solidarity movement which toppled Poland's communist government and led to the collapse of Soviet influence in Eastern Europe. "You are close to your goal," he said in Warsaw in a video conference with dissidents gathered at the Havana...
  • Cuban Freemason Dr. Alfredo Manuel Pulido Lopez is being held prisoner in Cuba.

    08/23/2005 7:04:49 PM PDT · by WJHII · 3 replies · 329+ views
    Cuba Net ^ | 08/23/2005 | William John Hagan and Rebeca Rodriguez Souto
    Cuban Freemason Dr. Alfredo Manuel Pulido Lopez is being held prisoner in Cuba. My name is William John Hagan and I am an American Journalist who is working to get Brother Pulido freed from his political prison in Cuba. If any Brother reading this is are in the employ of a government or agency which could put gentle pressure on getting Castro to free Brother Pulido then please contact me at: Or visit me on the web at This man will soon die without our help. Below is a letter from his wife regarding this matter. Freeing Brother...
  • Cuba Confiscates Land Where Dissidents Met

    08/20/2005 3:33:42 AM PDT · by freedom44 · 18 replies · 533+ views
    Newsday ^ | 8/20/05 | VANESSA ARRINGTON
    HAVANA -- The Cuban government has confiscated the land where an unprecedented gathering of Cuban dissidents took place earlier this year, an activist said Friday. Felix Bonne and his wife, who hosted the gathering on a lot next to their home, received a letter Thursday signed by an official from the agriculture ministry, said Martha Beatriz Roque, who also helped organize the gathering. The letter said the land was not being used sufficiently, Roque said. "We feel even more repressed, more crushed, than usual," Roque told The Associated Press. "But we are not going to back off, not one millimeter."...
  • Major Attacks/Arrests Now Underway Against Cuban Dissidents

    07/23/2005 10:34:35 AM PDT · by FormerACLUmember · 12 replies · 332+ views
    The Real Cuba ^ | 7/23/05 | Anonymous Dissident
    A summary of the latest news regarding the Castro regime forceful crackdown on peaceful citizens trying to exercise their right to protest: The three main leaders of the Assembly to Promote the Civil Society (APCS), Marta Beatriz Roque, Felix Bonne Carcasés and René Gómez Manzano, were arrested. The AP is reporting Saturday morning that the three were released today after spending the night in jail. A pro-Castro mob accompanied by several policemen entered the residence of Katia Sonia Martín, injuring her and her twin daughters who are only 2 years old. Her husband was handcuffed and taken away by police....
  • US slams communist Cuba for latest crackdown on dissidents

    07/23/2005 3:40:04 PM PDT · by nypokerface · 12 replies · 282+ views
    AFP ^ | 07/23/05
    WASHINGTON (AFP) - The United States condemned communist Cuba's authorities for their latest crackdown against dissidents. "Yesterday, July 22, the Cuban government arrested Rene Gomez Manzano and detained at least a dozen members of the Asamblea para Promover la Sociedad Civil (Assembly for the Promotion of Civil Society), including Marta Beatriz Roque, the group's president. Their only crime was attempting to exercise their basic human rights and freedoms," said Adam Ereli, the State Department's deputy spokesman. Roque, a 60-year-old economist, is president of the assembly, which had organized a protest in front of the French embassy in Havana Friday to...
  • Cuba stages new crackdown on dissidents

    07/23/2005 7:02:13 PM PDT · by freedom44 · 6 replies · 197+ views
    ScienceDaily via UPI ^ | 7/23/05 | ScienceDaily via UPI
    HAVANA, July 23 (UPI) -- A new crackdown on political opposition is under way in Cuba, with at least 20 dissidents arrested, the BBC reported Saturday. Those detained were said to include the three main organizers of a public meeting of dissidents that took place in May. The Cuban government, which did not confirm the arrests, has long insisted dissidents are not representative of public opinion, but, rather, are mercenaries in the pay of the United States. Cuban opposition sources told the BBC state security agents visited scores of houses across Havana Friday. Most of those arrested were reportedly planning...
  • More Than a Dozen New Dissidents Imprisoned in Communist Cuba This Year, Activist Says

    07/05/2005 9:01:15 PM PDT · by Constitutionalist_by_birth · 1 replies · 178+ views
    HAVANA (AP) - Cuba's communist government has jailed 13 more political opponents this year, most on charges of "dangerousness," a veteran rights activist reported Tuesday. The report released Tuesday by the Havana-based Cuban Commission on Human Rights and Reconciliation said the total number of political prisoners as of June 30 was 306. The charges against those jailed highlight the government's practice of making ambiguous accusations against its opponents, said Elizardo Sanchez, the activist who runs the non-governmental commission, which releases reports every six months.
  • Cuba dissidents debate democracy

    05/22/2005 9:35:00 AM PDT · by TigerLikesRooster · 1 replies · 152+ views
    BBC News ^ | 05/21/05
    Cuba dissidents debate democracy Cuban dissidents have spent the last day of their defiant public meeting in Havana debating democracy bills. Chanting "freedom" and "democracy now", about 100 dissidents voted for a steering committee to lead the group. "We are satisfied that each and every one of us has fulfilled our duty to our nation," said Martha Beatriz Roque, the lead organiser of the event. Cuban authorities did not intervene but had earlier expelled several European politicians who planned to attend. On the first day, the meeting was attended by about 200 dissidents as well as Western envoys. The dissidents...
  • Cubans celebrate rare assembly

    05/21/2005 1:28:48 AM PDT · by Cincinatus' Wife · 8 replies · 402+ views
    Washington Times ^ | May 21, 2005 | Anita Snow, AP
    HAVANA — With shouts of "Freedom" and the singing of the Cuban national anthem, more than 200 people opened a rare opposition assembly in Cuba yesterday, uninterrupted by authorities despite the expulsion of European lawmakers, journalists and others who planned to attend. Martha Beatriz Roque, the meeting's lead organizer and a former political prisoner who attempted a similar gathering nine years ago, called it "a point of departure" for future work. "There will be a before and after for May 20 in Cuba," Mrs. Roque said, contending it was the first such gathering in Fidel Castro's 46 years of Communist...
  • Castro's secret police crack down on democracy campaign

    05/21/2005 4:28:02 AM PDT · by MadIvan · 13 replies · 400+ views
    The Daily Telegraph ^ | May 21, 2005 | Francis Harris
    Hundreds of Cuban dissidents chanted "freedom, freedom" and "down with Fidel Castro" at the start of a gathering of pro-democracy campaigners held near Havana.But the opening of the convention, held in an orchard, was overshadowed by a wave of arrests and the expulsion of visiting European parliamentarians and journalists, as President Castro's secret police acted against the island's first multi-party democracy conference. Five European legislators, with several journalists and human rights activists from the Czech Republic, Germany and Italy, were seized. At least six Poles were believed to be in Cuban jails. Among those expelled was Karel Schwarzenberg, formerly an...
  • Anti-Castro Dissidents Rally in Cuba

    05/20/2005 7:50:32 PM PDT · by Asphalt · 16 replies · 248+ views
    FOX ^ | Friday, May 20, 2005
    HAVANA — With shouts of "Freedom" and the singing of the Cuban national anthem, more than 200 people on Friday opened a rare opposition assembly in communist Cuba, uninterrupted by authorities despite the expulsion of European lawmakers, journalists and others who planned to attend. Martha Beatriz Roque (search), the meeting's lead organizer and a former political prisoner who attempted a similar gathering nine years ago, called it "a point of departure" for future work. "There will be a before and after for May 20 in Cuba," Roque said, claiming it was the first such gathering in Fidel Castro's (search) 46...
  • Cuban dissidents meet for historic opposition assembly

    05/20/2005 7:17:45 PM PDT · by The Bronze Titan · 7 replies · 256+ views / South Florida Sun-Sentinel ^ | May. 20, 2005 | VANESSA BAUZA
    <p>HAVANA - (KRT) - Under a hand-painted banner proclaiming, "The homeland belongs to all," about 150 Cuban dissidents from across the island gathered for a landmark opposition meeting to demand freedom for political prisoners and debate the future of their fledging civic and political organizations.</p>
  • EU threatens sanctions as Cuba expels politicians

    05/20/2005 10:21:49 AM PDT · by Lukasz · 10 replies · 349+ views
    Expatica ^ | 20 May 2005
    PRAGUE/BERLIN - A Czech senator and a German member of parliament were expelled from Cuba for planning to meet dissident opponents of Cuban president Fidel Castro, officials in Prague and Berlin confirmed on Friday, while two Polish journalists were detained for the same reason. The European Union responded on Friday by threatening to reimpose sanctions on Cuba. In Brussels, the European Commission expressed regret at the move. "These are not the right steps," said a Commission spokesman, warning the EU could again impose sanctions on Cuba as early as June. Previous EU sanctions in protest over human rights shortcomings and...
  • Cuban dissidents rally in Havana

    05/20/2005 3:23:44 PM PDT · by So Cal Rocket · 11 replies · 337+ views
    CNN ^ | Friday, May 20, 2005
    HAVANA, Cuba (CNN) -- In what organizers called an unprecedented event, dissidents from groups opposed to Fidel Castro's communist regime gathered publicly Friday and chanted "Down with Fidel." "Freedom! Freedom!" the group of more than 100 delegates cheered in the yard of Felix Bonne, a veteran dissident, in a working-class section of Havana. Castro's regime would not allow the use of a theater or hotel for the assembly. Participants included members of dissident groups that are sometimes at odds but share the goal of driving Castro from power. "We think this is the first democratic assembly that has ever been...
  • A historic day for freedom in Cuba!

    05/20/2005 1:57:00 PM PDT · by FormerACLUmember · 28 replies · 677+ views
    The Real Cuba ^ | 5/20/05 | (identity withheld)
    Cuban dissidents meeting in Havana listen to a pre-recorded message from president Bush. "No tyrant can stand firm forever against the strength of freedom," said the president in Spanish. "Because the hope for freedom is in each of our hearts. So today, we are certain that Cuba soon will be free." One of the Cuban dissidents gathering for an Assembly to Promote Civil Society in Cuba proudly displays his tattoos with the Statue of Liberty and the Twin Towers.More than 200 dissidents are currently meeting in the house of one of Cuba's best known dissidents. Their first free vote in...
  • Czechs, Slovaks, Poles firm in support for Cuban dissidents.

    04/17/2005 1:36:35 PM PDT · by lizol · 5 replies · 319+ views
    Insight Central Europe ^ | 15.4.2005 | Rob Cameron
    Czechs, Slovaks, Poles firm in support for Cuban dissidents 15.4.2005 - Rob Cameron The U.N. Human Rights Commission last week passed a U.S.-sponsored proposal condemning Cuba for its record on human rights. The vote has been widely welcomed in Central Europe where countries such as the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Poland are highly critical of Fidel Castro and his regime. But it wasn't always so. Before 1989 the countries of Central and Eastern Europe were close allies of fellow Communist Cuba. The voice of former Czech President Vaclav Havel, speaking in a recorded message to a crowd of people in...
  • Castro's Prisoners Riot in Cuba

    04/07/2005 6:24:45 PM PDT · by wagglebee · 8 replies · 549+ views
    NewsMax ^ | 4/7/05 | AP
    Inmates in a Cuban prison set mattresses and other materials ablaze in violence that left several prisoners seriously injured, a veteran rights activist said Thursday. The Tuesday night disturbance, later controlled by Cuban authorities, was the second in less than 20 days at the Combinado del Este Prison, which houses thousands of inmates. Elizardo Sanchez, head of the Havana-based Cuban Commission on Human Rights and Reconciliation, learned of the disturbance from prisoners' relatives who were contacted by authorities. Cuba's communist government issued no official report on the incident at the prison in Havana, and it was unknown how the disturbance...
  • Opponents of Castro Appeal to U.S. Congress

    03/05/2005 7:16:47 PM PST · by wagglebee · 2 replies · 202+ views
    NewsMax ^ | 3/5/05 | VOA
    Cuban dissidents have made emotional appeals from Havana for the United States and Europe to do more to help the opposition to President Fidel Castro. They spoke in an unprecedented telephone call Thursday directly to a congressional hearing marking the second anniversary of a 2003 Cuban government crackdown on dissidents. Three of Cuba's best-known dissidents told lawmakers on the House Western Hemisphere and Human Rights Subcommittees they and others campaigning for democracy still risk harsh reprisals in retaliation for their activities. Rene Gomez Manzano is a lawyer and key dissident leader imprisoned in the late 1990s for his pro-democracy activities....
  • Standing Up to a Dictator [Castro]

    03/05/2005 5:41:41 AM PST · by aculeus · 18 replies · 411+ views
    The Washington Post ^ | March 5, 2005 | By Berta Soler Fernandez
    HAVANA -- After Cuban authorities released seven political prisoners recently, some of us, wives of imprisoned Cuban dissidents, received calls from abroad rejoicing over these "liberations" and over the improved human rights situation in Cuba. But these were not liberations; the regime simply released a few sick men on parole. And in any event, all 75 dissidents detained in the spring crackdown of 2003 are prisoners of conscience, recognized by Amnesty International. All should be freed. Foreigners tend to attribute these releases to pressures from outside (the United States or the European Union) or as a nice gesture by Fidel...
  • Cuban Dissidents Testify to Congress from Havana

    03/03/2005 8:47:04 PM PST · by FairOpinion · 17 replies · 362+ views
    ABC News ^ | March 3, 2005 | Vicki Allen
    Three Cuban dissidents in a telephone hookup from Havana told a congressional panel on Thursday that allowing American tourists to visit the island would bring corruption, not democracy. As members of a House of Representatives International Relations subcommittee praised them for defying Cuban President Fidel Castro, the dissidents endorsed U.S. policies to isolate his government. "We are supporting what you are doing there because we have a lot of people suffering in jail. We need democracy," said Martha Beatriz Roque, leader of the Cuban Dissident Working Group. Castro "could present it as a great political victory" for himself if the...
  • Writer Guillermo Cabrera Infante Dies (anti-Castro author)

    02/23/2005 2:43:47 PM PST · by Rastus · 8 replies · 285+ views
    AP ^ | 02.22.05 | Michael McDonough
    LONDON - Cuban-born novelist Guillermo Cabrera Infante, regarded as one of the most original voices in 20th-century Spanish literature and an outspoken critic of Fidel Castro (news - web sites), has died in London. He was 75. Cabrera died in a hospital Monday from septicemia, said Carmen Pinilla, a spokeswoman for his literary agents, the Balcells agency in Barcelona, Spain. Septicemia is a type of blood infection. The writer, a London resident since 1966, had suffered a series of illnesses in recent years including diabetes as well as heart and kidney problems, Pinilla said in a phone interview Tuesday. She...
  • Castro Insults Bush

    02/21/2005 4:49:26 PM PST · by wagglebee · 46 replies · 1,101+ views
    NewsMax ^ | 2/22/05 | Frank Calzon
    With the European Union agreeing on January 31 to lift the sanctions that it imposed on Cuba in 2003 after Fidel Castro imprisoned 75 political dissidents, European officials will be resuming their visits to the island. Spain's government pushed for the policy switch that critics have labeled a victory for appeasement. Cuban dissidents and exiles, Spanish opposition parties, human rights organizations and former Czech President Vaclav Havel have denounced the new policy as an abomination. Still, in foreign affairs as complicated as those involving Cuba, there are rarely any clear-cut victories. Madrid's proposal triggered a welcome and enlightening debate on...
  • Czech Republic Blocks EU Attempt to Freeze Out Cuban Dissidents

    02/09/2005 2:35:55 PM PST · by FlyLow · 13 replies · 377+ views
    CNS News ^ | 2-9-05 | Patrick Goodenough
    ( - Amid moves by the European Union to soften its diplomatic stance towards Cuba, the Czech Republic, an E.U. newcomer, has stymied an attempt to ban Cuban dissidents from attending receptions at European embassies in Havana. The Prague Post called the achievement Czech's "first foreign-policy victory since joining the E.U." on May 1 last year. The E.U. froze diplomatic ties with Fidel Castro's regime after it cracked down on dissidents in March 2003, imprisoning 75 of them. The bloc also resolved to support Cuban dissidents by inviting them to functions at the E.U. diplomatic missions, a move that in...
  • Cuba releases a handful of dissidents

    11/29/2004 11:12:34 AM PST · by Luis Gonzalez · 15 replies · 479+ views
    The Miami Herald ^ | Nov. 29, 2004 | NANCY SAN MARTIN
    A handful of Cuban dissidents jailed during a harsh crackdown last year were allowed to return home Monday amid widespread speculation that the Cuban government's surprise move is part of a strategy to ease strained relations with the European Union.The releases came after a meeting last week between Cuban Foreign Minister Felipe Pérez Roque and Spain's ambassador in Havana and an announcement that the two nations had resumed formal contact.Cuba broke off diplomatic contacts with European Union member nations in Havana last year after the EU adopted sanctions against the communist-ruled island in response to the government's jailing of 75...
  • Cuban Dissident Calls for Referendum

    07/25/2004 12:51:32 PM PDT · by wagglebee · 5 replies · 476+ views
    NewsMax ^ | 7/24/04 | AP
    HAVANA -- A former political prisoner whose case was highlighted by President Bush urged Cuba's government Friday to hold a referendum on whether to change the communist island's political system. In a 10-page report called "The Cuba We Want," Leonardo Bruzon Avila and fellow dissident Carlos Rios Otero called for the referendum and laid out a plan for Cuba's transition to a multiparty, democratic system and free-market economy. The report was delivered Friday to the offices of Cuban Justice Minister Roberto Diaz Sotolongo. There was no public reaction by the President Fidel Castro's government to the recommendations. The proposal echoed...
  • Cuba frees only woman political prisoner

    07/25/2004 11:47:54 AM PDT · by freedom44 · 5 replies · 261+ views
    CNN ^ | 7/25/04 | CNN
    HAVANA, Cuba (Reuters) -- Cuba freed on Thursday dissident economist Marta Beatriz Roque, the only woman among 75 people arrested 16 months ago in a crackdown on dissent. Roque, the most prominent dissident to be released this year by President Fidel Castro's government, was surprised. "I didn't expect to be let out. I will continue my opposition work. They can't change my ideas," she told reporters at the home of a relative in central Havana. The 58-year-old dissident said she had spent the last year in a military hospital suffering from diabetes, hypertension and heart problems and was released on...
  • Treatment of Oscar Elias Biscet and Other Cuban Political Prisoners

    07/25/2004 11:49:14 AM PDT · by mandingo republican · 1 replies · 284+ views
    Treatment of Oscar Elias Biscet and Other Cuban Political Prisoners Press Statement Richard Boucher, Spokesman Washington, DC July 21, 2004
  • Castro starving Cuban dissident? Christian prisoner fears he'll dies after being withheld food

    07/08/2004 11:57:08 PM PDT · by JohnHuang2 · 12 replies · 255+ views ^ | Friday, July 9, 2004 | Stefan J. Bos
    Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet, one of Cuba's most prominent detained Christian dissidents, has urged family and friends to pray with him amid fears he may die of starvation as prison officials have denied him food for about three weeks, Assist News Service has learned. Christian Solidarity Worldwide, or CSW, and an activist Internet website dedicated to him published a letter from Dr. Biscet, which was apparently smuggled out of prison, expressing concern about the situation. "Since June 17 I haven't had any food brought to me, practically forcing me to be on a hunger strike. No one has given me...
  • Cuba's Communists launch crackdown

    07/05/2004 7:33:28 PM PDT · by freedom44 · 12 replies · 390+ views
    FinancialTimes ^ | 7/05/04 | Marc Frank
    Cuba's ruling Communist party has launched a far-reaching assault on "corruption and illegalities" that could lead to the expulsion of moderate members. The campaign - yet to be reported by official government media - reflects the party's ideological retrenchment and underlines the extent to which the government has renounced its timid market-oriented reforms of the early 1990s. Over the past two or three months members of the party's political bureau have been visiting local party branches to tell militants that they have one last chance to clean up their acts. The new focus on corruption has been accompanied by measures...
  • Kerry's Cruel Realism

    06/19/2004 5:46:35 AM PDT · by rotstan · 17 replies · 419+ views
    NY Times ^ | 19 June 04 | David Brooks
    Sometimes in the unscripted moments of a campaign, when the handlers are away, a candidate shows his true nature. Earlier this month, Andres Oppenheimer of The Miami Herald asked John Kerry what he thought of something called the Varela Project. Kerry said it was "counterproductive." It's necessary to try other approaches, he added. The Varela Project happens to be one of the most inspiring democracy movements in the world today. It is being led by a Cuban dissident named Oswaldo Payá, who has spent his life trying to topple Castro's regime.
  • Dissident study calls Cuban prisons 'tropical gulag'

    05/12/2004 8:07:33 AM PDT · by SmithPatterson · 105+ views | 5-12-04 | Unknown
    HAVANA : Cuba has 100,000 prisoners behind bars, though just 4,000 were imprisoned before Fidel Castro came to power 45 years ago, according to what dissidents call the first study of the "tropical gulag." The president of the Cuban Human Rights and Reconciliation Commission, Elizardo Sanchez Santa Cruz, told journalists the "huge statistic" was "the bitter fruit of the totalitarian system." Sanchez, a former political prisoner, said the year-long study was done with the help of prisoners' families who tallied the numbers of inmates across the country. Cuba's population roughly doubled since 1949, from 5.5 million to the current 11...
  • Dissident study calls Cuban prisons 'tropical gulag'

    05/12/2004 8:11:16 AM PDT · by The Bronze Titan · 1 replies · 176+ views
    Cubanet / AFP / Yahoo News ^ | May 10, 2004 | Cubanet
    HAVANA, 11 (AFP) - Cuba has 100,000 prisoners behind bars, though just 4,000 were imprisoned before Fidel Castro came to power 45 years ago, according to what dissidents call the first study of the "tropical gulag." The president of the Cuban Human Rights and Reconciliation Commission, Elizardo Sanchez Santa Cruz, told journalists the "huge statistic" was "the bitter fruit of the totalitarian system." Sanchez, a former political prisoner, said the year-long study was done with the help of prisoners' families who tallied the numbers of inmates across the country. Cuba's population roughly doubled since 1949, from 5.5 million to the...
  • Media Silent Over Imprisoned Cuban Doctors

    04/18/2004 12:46:03 PM PDT · by wagglebee · 2 replies · 120+ views
    NewsMax ^ | 4/17/04 | Carl Limbacher
    The World Medical Association is pressing the Cuban government for information on four physicians and two dentists who have been in prison in Cuba for the past two years for human rights activities. This month marks the second anniversary of their imprisonment. The WMA is urging its 80 national medical association members to write to their governments and to the European Commission requesting them to put pressure on the Cuban government to disclose information about what, if any, trials the six are facing and the exact nature of their sentences, and to ask for their fair and humane treatment in...
  • Castro's Daughter Cries for Cuba's Plight

    04/02/2004 7:17:19 PM PST · by wagglebee · 4 replies · 122+ views
    NewsMax ^ | 04/02/04 | Carl Limbacher
    Fidel Castro's daughter is speaking out against the arrest and jailing of 27 journalists a year ago for voicing their opposition to the Cuban dictator Fidel Castro. "At least we can try to keep those people alive by keeping them in the news," Alina Fernandez (Castro) told the Montreal Gazette from her home in Miami, Fla. "We have to take every opportunity to let people know about the situation [in Cuba]." Invited to come to Canada by Reporters Without Borders, which calls her homeland with 30 reporters behind bars to date the world's biggest prison for journalists, Fernandez said: "The...
  • Cuba's Spring

    03/24/2004 10:40:23 PM PST · by Ooh-Ah · 5 replies · 188+ views
    The Washington Post ^ | March 25, 2004 | Editorial
    A YEAR AGO Cuba's Communist government cracked down on nonviolent dissidents, independent journalists, human rights activists, librarians and teachers. Within weeks, 75 of them were in prison, sentenced to terms ranging from 6 to 28 years after one-day closed trials. Carried out while the world's attention was focused on the war in Iraq, this was President Fidel Castro's attempt to destroy a pro-democracy civil society that had been peacefully emerging. A year later, the bad news is that those 75 political prisoners are still locked away, in many cases under inhumane conditions. The worse news is that Mr. Castro has...
  • Wives of Jailed Cuban Dissidents March Through Havana Demanding Husbands' Release

    03/19/2004 5:33:35 PM PST · by nuconvert · 2 replies · 204+ views
    AP ^ | Mar.19, 2004
    Wives of Jailed Cuban Dissidents March Through Havana Demanding Husbands' Release Mar.19, 2004 By Andrea Rodriguez/ Associated Press Writer HAVANA (AP) - The wives of 15 Cuban political prisoners jailed in last year's crackdown on dissent held a rare public march in Havana's streets Friday demanding amnesty for their husbands. The women - dressed all in white, with many pinning their husbands' photographs to their chests - started their march early Friday at the well-known Coppelia ice cream restaurant in the city center. "Freedom for the 75 political prisoners!" the women shouted as they marched up to Department of Prisons...
  • Hentoff Renounces ALA Freedom Award

    01/29/2004 12:32:28 PM PST · by LibertyBelt · 14 replies · 235+ views
    Village Voice ^ | Jan 29, 2004 | Nat Hentoff
    The Abandoned Librarians Castro's Judges Burn Books 'Lacking Usefulness' January 29th, 2004 1:30 PM Carla Hayden, president of the American Library Association: "committed to intellectual freedom," with certain exceptions (Hilary Schwab Photography) s I've been reporting in this column, there has been a fierce civil war within the American Library Association as to whether that body—the largest organization of librarians in the world—will help free the 10 librarians locked up in Fidel Castro's gulag for the next 20 or more years for making available to Cubans such subversive documents as the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights and George...
  • Cuban Dissident Librarians Abandoned by Their American Counterparts (Castro's handmaidens)

    01/28/2004 2:46:33 PM PST · by quidnunc · 5 replies · 174+ views
    The Digital Freedom Network ^ | January 28, 2004 | A. E. Huggett
    On January 14th, the American Library Association (ALA), which is the world's largest library union, tacitly approved of Fidel Castro's March 2003 arrests and persecution of dissidents when they brushed aside the fate of 14 jailed Cuban Independent Library members, who had copies of the UN's Universal Declaration of Human Rights and George Orwell's 1984 and Animal Farm in their possession. Visiting the ALA's San Diego winter meeting was Cuban librarian Gisela Delgado Sablon, whose husband is one of the librarians jailed. Sablon begged the ALA to demand the dissidents' release from their 20-year prison terms and an amendment calling...

    01/04/2004 7:23:08 PM PST · by mandingo republican · 7 replies · 167+ views
    Coalition of Cuban-American Women ^ | 1-4-04 | Coalition of Cuban-American Women
    IN DANGER LIFE OF INCARCERATED CUBAN PHYSICIAN DR. OSCAR E. BISCET Confined in a "dungeon" since November 2003 January 3, 2004 "My husband is unrecognizable since I last saw him four months ago; he is so thin, pale and ill looking", declared Elsa Morejon, wife of the Cuban civic leader, Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet Gonzalez, " these punishments are destroying him and if he continues where he is he will die. Cuban prisoner of conscience, Dr. Oscar E. Biscet Gonzalez, who is serving a 25 year prison sentence, continues confined with a common criminal in a cell with no windows...
  • Castro has much to celebrate 45 years after ousting U.S.-backed dictator

    12/31/2003 1:27:20 PM PST · by Tailgunner Joe · 14 replies · 472+ views
    AP ^ | December 31, 2003 | ANITA SNOW
    With many of his most vocal critics silenced or in prison and island's tourism industry on the mend, 77-year-old President Fidel Castro had much to celebrate on the eve of the anniversary of the revolution that brought him to power 45 years ago on New Year's Day 1959. The bearded, one-time guerrilla leader now shows his age, but still has the stamina to give a speech lasting eight hours, as he did at a parliamentary session earlier this month. A major address by Castro was considered likely over the next few days, although nothing had been announced by Wednesday. Numerous...