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May 18

An Act of Solidarity with the People of Cuba: The Struggle for Freedom Continues

Click the following links to read the translated statements of José Daniel Ferrer , Berta Soler , and Jorge Luis García Pérez Antúnez

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May 20 marks the 110th year of Cuba’s achievement of independence from its Spanish overlords. Yet, the struggle to realize the full blessings of independence so fiercely desired by the Cuban people remains incomplete. Individual rights and liberties are callously denied by a communist dictatorship that has ruled with absolute authority for over 50 years. Rights of speech, travel, association, and access to information as well basic economic and personal freedoms are denied in ways inconsistent with universal values and fundamental human rights. For this reason, May 20 remains a day closely associated with the thwarted aspirations and shattered hopes of the Cuban people, especially for those who courageously resist the regime’s cruel and arbitrary demands for obedience and silence.

In May 2008, people around the world observed the first Solidarity Day with Cuba – the purpose of which was to “shine a bright light on the Castro regime's abuses” and “call on the Government of Cuba to immediately and unconditionally release all prisoners of conscience.” In 2012, in the final hours of Castroism, the challenge remains to demonstrate support for the growing number of ordinary Cubans who reject a mere succession scenario and demand a genuine transition to a post-Castro Cuba where individual rights, political freedom, consent of the governed, and economic freedom prevail. It is their story, struggle and hope, Cuba Solidarity Day celebrates.

More About the Speakers

Keynote Remarks by
The Honorable Connie Mack (R-FL)
Chairman, Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere, Committee on Foreign Affairs, United States House of Representatives

Followed by a Discussion with
Normando Hernandez
Reagan Fascell Democracy Fellow, National Endowment for Democracy

Vanessa Lopez
Research Associate, Institute for Cuban and Cuban-American Studies, University of Miami

Tania Mastapa, Ph.D.
Research Professor in Cuban and Latin American Studies, Institute of World Politics

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Ray Walser, Ph.D. Ray Walser, Ph.D.

Senior Policy Analyst Read More