» Non-Cooperation

Human Rights Activists Fast in Cuba to Confront Repression for Wearing “Cambio” T-shirts
By Cuban Democratic Directorate

Latin-American Leaders Support Their Demand for Freedom

Members of exile organizations who support the non-cooperation campaign. On the panel (from left to right): Angel De Fana, Plantados, Pedro Peñaranda,Municipios de Cuba en el Exilio, María del Milagros Méndez, Costa Rica, Hipólito Ramírez, Rep. Dominicana and Danny Quirós, Costa Rica. At the podium, Sylvia Iriondo, MAR por Cuba. (Cuban Democratic Directorate)

Members of exile organizations who support the non-cooperation campaign. On the panel (from left to right): Angel De Fana, Plantados, Pedro Peñaranda,Municipios de Cuba en el Exilio, María del Milagros Méndez, Costa Rica, Hipólito Ramírez, Rep. Dominicana and Danny Quirós, Costa Rica. At the podium, Sylvia Iriondo, MAR por Cuba. (Cuban Democratic Directorate)

Havana, September 7, 2007. Human rights activists challenge strong repression from police operatives by peacefully fasting for the freedom of political prisoners in Cuba and in support of the non-cooperation campaign. Neighbors and activists gathered together at 491 West Avenue, between Asunción and Varona, Arroyo Naranjo, Havana, to show their solidarity. Some of the individuals wore t-shirts that read “Cambio”, or “Change”.

 

While this occurred in the Arroyo Naranjo neighborhood in Havana, leaders from various human rights organizations in Latin America held a press conference on Friday, September 7th supporting those human rights activists in Cuba that have been fasting since Saturday, August 4th. Also present in the conference were several exile organizations that also support the campaign.

 

“Military officials have taken over an elementary school to use as a military base to harass those activists that try to join in solidarity,” stated Ángel Enrique Fernández Rivero, former political prisoner and one of those fasting during the press conference.

 

Hipólito Ramírez, Dominican Patriotic Committee, María del Milagro Méndez, Costa Rican Solidarity Committee for Democracy in Cuba, Danny Quirós, Communications Director of the Libertario Movement Party, the third political force in Costa Rica, discussed ideas and initiatives that shall occur in their respective countries in order to support the efforts made by those who are fasting for their freedom in Cuba. “The non-cooperation campaign attracts international attention because it is a peaceful form of struggle against a dictatorship,” expressed Danny Quirós. “We are convinced that this is how the Cuban people will obtain the change that they need and yearn. 

 

According to the declarations from Havana, the activists and neighbors of Arroyo Naranjo who attempt to join in solidarity with the people fasting, are subjected to violence and forced to remove shirts with the word “Cambio” or the phrase “YO NO”. According to the declarations of former political prisoner Julio César López Rodríguez, who is also fasting for the freedom of political prisoners and in support of the non-cooperation campaign, human rights activist Emilio Pérez Leyva, President of the Hardline Front and former political prisoner, was detained outside of the residence of Raimundo Carpio Cruz, where the fast is taking place, for refusing to remove his “Cambio” T-shirt, while trying to join the fast.

 

Pérez Leyva was released after a few hours thanks to the efforts made by other activists who pressured authorities to free him. Pérez Leyva’s wife, Lizbeth, mobilized the activists and informed State Security that if Pérez Leyva was not freed, those fasting and other activists would organize a “sit-in” in front of the City Police Station. 

 

The Raúl Castro regime continues repression in the streets of Cuba, and the Cuban opposition maintains their stance in their struggle for their human rights and freedom.

 

 

 

 

 

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