New displays of solidarity with Cuba took place in the United States this weekend as part of that growing movement of support that carries an elementary request: Let live a people whose only sin has been to build and defend a different model under the very noses of the empire.
That demand means lifting the blockade, the longest in history against any country, and removing Cuba from the list of states that –according only to Washington’s criteria- sponsor terrorism.
But Cuba is loved, and it is admired, and that was heard today in Miami by the voices of Cubans who live in the US with other solidarity groups advocating for the lifting of that policy of asphyxiation that has lasted more than 60 years.
Despite the heavy rain at times, the participants gathered at the Miami International Airport as they often do at the end of every month, with signs that read: “Remove Cuba from the list of sponsors of terrorism,” “Bridges of Love,” “Down with the blockade”, while repeating slogans and calls for support for the island.
“Once again in Miami the seed of love triumphed over hate”, Cuban Roberto Yis told Prensa Latina. He also said that “ the harassment and provocations we sometimes face is wrong because this is not about politics, it is not about left and right, it is about the right of our people to survive without being blockaded.”
From his page on the social network Facebook, activist Carlos Lazo said that Cuban Americans and Americans gathered “regardless of the rain, regardless of the thunder, rejecting hatred, imposing love.”
Yesterday in Oakland, California, a similar event for Cuba took place where more than 30 Cuba solidarity activists held banners at the busy farmers’ market near Lake Merritt and in front of the iconic Grand Lake Theater in Oakland.
As photojournalist Bill Hackwell recounted, many cars honked as they drove by, and passers-by were receptive to the literature we handed out calling for Cuba to be removed from the list of state sponsors of terrorism, an end to the blockade, and the closure of the illegal U.S. base on occupied Cuban territory at Guantanamo Bay.
It was not lost on some that the last time there was a demonstration in solidarity with Cuba in Oakland was in April of 2021, organized by Alicia Jrapko, a woman who is remembered for her life in the struggle and a dear friend of the Cuban people. That was her last public event.
Other actions also took place this past week in Chicago, Illinois, and in cities in Minnesota. Many of the people participating in these events for Cuba in the US will be attending the annual meeting of the National Network on Cuba (NNOC) in Boston on October 13-15.
Still resonating is the vocal presentations of several world leader in support of Cuba at the high evel segment of the 78th regular session of the United Nations General Assembly, calling for the elimination of the blockade against Cuba.
President of Brazil, Luiz Inacio Lula Da Silva, for example, once again condemned the unilateral siege maintained by the White House for more than six decades on Cuba when he said, ”Brazil will continue to denounce measures taken without the protection of the UN Charter, such as the economic and financial blockade imposed on Cuba.”
The Bolivian President, Luis Arce, described Washington’s unilateral siege as “inhuman and criminal”.
Speaking in the debate, the dignitary criticized such coercive measures and the reprisals applied by hegemonic powers against peoples to the detriment of their development and the most elementary human rights.
Arce affirmed that these policies confirm the dysfunctionality of a system far removed from international law and multilateralism. “A clear example of these measures is the illegal, inhumane and criminal economic and financial blockade imposed by the United States against Cuba,” he reiterated.
“I want to call attention to the use of unilateral measures of coercion. In accordance with the UN Charter, the only legitimate sanctions are those imposed by the Security Council to enforce its decisions on the maintenance of peace and security,” said Argentine President Alberto Fernández.
By virtue of this, he added, Argentina joins the demands of the peoples of Cuba and Venezuela for the lifting of the blockades suffered by those nations.
The president of Cuba, Miguel Díaz-Canel, denounced on the same stage of the UN that the blockade is an extraterritorial, cruel and silent economic war that is accompanied by a powerful political machinery of destabilization against his country.
“The Cuban people creatively resists and wins in the face of that ruthless economic war, which since 2019, in full pandemic, opportunistically escalated to an even more extreme dimension, the head of state emphasized.
For that reason, speaking later at a solidarity event, he thanked those who stand by his country’s side in the demand for an end to the blockade.
To his friends in the United States he said: “Receive a fraternal embrace and solidarity from the people of Cuba, receive a message of friendship for the American people”.
Deisy Francis Mexidor is a Cuban journalist, a regular contributor to Resumen Latinoamericano and is a correspondent for Prensa Latina in the United States.
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