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Relatives of political prisoners to the international community: We want freedom, not donations

A group of Cuban women sent a strong message to the international community, especially to Western democracies, in which they said that Cuba does not need donations or cooperation with the totalitarian regime, but freedom.

Mothers and wives of political prisoners, detained after the historic protests of 11J and Nuevitas, in Camagüey, recorded their words on video and asked the United States and the European Union (EU) to direct their efforts to free protesters and activists who find themselves behind bars, victims of injustice and repression by the Cuban regime.

“‘Cuba needs freedom, not donations.’ Here is a strong message for @USEmbCuba and @UEenCuba. Get on the side of the Cuban people, not the regime. Listen to the victims, not to the perpetrators and their lobbyists in the US and Europe”, claimed the independent journalist Norges Rodríguez.

In a Twitter thread, Rodríguez shared the videos published by the activist Albert Fonse, brother of the political prisoner of 11J, Roberto Pérez Fonseca, sentenced to 10 years in prison.

A total of 15 Cuban women clearly told the international community to direct their efforts to promote democracy and human rights in Cuba, and to defend activists who exercise their right to freedom of expression and members of civil society who demand freedom .

Marta Perdomo, mother of political prisoners Nadir and Jorge Martín Perdomo; Delanis Álvarez, wife of Duniesky Ruiz; Saily Nuñez, wife of Maikel Puig, and a dozen others called on world leaders to listen to the demands of Cubans, for which thousands are paying unjust and long prison sentences.

Last Tuesday, the United States government announced an aid of $2 million dollars to Cuba to alleviate the disaster caused by Hurricane Ian and to benefit the victims after the passage of the storm.

In a statement, the Joe Biden administration said that humanitarian aid will reach the Cuban people through “trusted international entities that work directly with residents of communities devastated by the storm,” noting that the process will be entrusted to the United States for International Development (USAID).

The announcement generated controversy among Cuban activists and a wave of rejection among various civil society actors who consider it counterproductive to continue negotiating aid and cooperation with a totalitarian regime that controls and manages in an opaque manner the funds and programs that the international community allocates to development. .

“We stand with the Cuban people as they work to recover from this disaster. The United States will continue to monitor and assess humanitarian needs in coordination with our trusted partners and the international community, and we will continue to seek ways to provide meaningful support to the Cuban people, consistent with the laws and regulations of the United States,” State Department spokesman Ned Price said in his statement at the time.

For its part, a week earlier the EU announced a donation of one million euros to the Cuban government to help those affected by Hurricane Ian after it passed through the west of the country.

Shortly after, the announcement by the United Nations (UN) of a 42 million dollar action plan aimed at helping almost 800,000 Cubans affected by Hurricane Ian was made known.

“We want freedom, not donations,” said Isabel Cristina Agosto Grimal, mother of political prisoners Jimmy Johnson Agosto and Alejandro Pérez Agosto, detained by State Security as a result of the demonstrations that took place at the end of August in Nuevitas in the context of an energy crisis that has motivated a new wave of protests in Cuba.

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José Martí
José Martí
Nacionalista cubano, poeta, filósofo, ensayista, periodista, traductor, profesor y editor.

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