Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Cuban and Venezuelan solidarity in the midst of crisis: A brief and incomplete summary

"To save freedom in Venezuela is do it in Cuba. Everyone to participate in this historic event. Neither Maduro nor Castro, we want freedom!" -  Jorge Luis García Pérez Antúnez, announcing from Cuba solidarity protests in support of Venezuelan Democratic Resistance on February 20, 2014 

Activists in Cuba protesting in support of Leopoldo López and Venezuela
Cubans have suffered under the grip of a totalitarian communist dictatorship imposed by the Castro brothers since 1959. They understand better than most what the stakes are for the democratic resistance in Venezuela. On August 25, 2013, Rosa Maria Payá Acevedo of the Christian Liberation Movement in an address to the Christian Democrats of the Americas placed the Venezuelan situation in a regional context:
"The Cuban government is not legitimate, as the Venezuelan government is not and will not be because presidents of the world shake hands with the impostors in power, it will be much less because they spearhead regional organizations like the CELAC, as is the case of the Cuban dictator, to the shame of Latin America. Legitimacy is delivered by the people at the polls, in free elections, in an atmosphere of respect and safety. We all know that's not what happened in April in Venezuela and we all know that has not occurred in Cuba for more than 60 years."

Christian Liberation Movement's logo in Venezuelan colors

 Both on the island and in exile there have been actions in solidarity with people of Venezuela struggling to be free. These are but a small sample there are many more examples:
On February 16, 2014 the Christian Liberation Movement tweeted: "Castro tyranny sends thugs to Venezuela, we send them the L of Liberation" and posted the above logo with Venezuelan colors.
On February 20, 2014 members of the internal Venezuelan resistance and their Cuban counterparts released a joint declaration of coordinated actions in their respective countries at a press conference held in Miami

On February 24, 2014 members of the Cuban exile and FIU communities gathered to hold a silent vigil for four victims of the 1996 Brothers to the Rescue shootdown and the students murdered since February 12, 2014 in Venezuela.

On February 28, 2014 the Christian Liberation Movement held a teach-in on "Cuba and Venezuela: Challenges for Democracy" with a prominent member of the Venezuela opposition in attendance on what should have been Oswaldo Payá Sardiñas's 62nd birthday.  

On March 14, 2014 Cuban exiles held a mass at the Our Lady of Charity (La Ermita) praying for liberty and justice in Venezuela.

On April 2, 2014 over twitter Oscar Elías Bicet posted photos of a march by Project Emilia activists in Cuba in support of imprisoned Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo López Mendoza, congresswoman Maria Corina Machado, and Venezuela.

On April 8, 2014 activists from Cuba, Ukraine and Venezuela signed a joint document for freedom and democracy at the Institute for Cuban and Cuban American Studies at the University of Miami.
 Over social networks, Cubans have been retweeting the posts of Venezuelan activists engaged in nonviolent resistance in their homeland. Furthermore, Cuban exiles have joined in solidarity with protest marches in South Florida. Below Aramis Perez, of the Cuban Democratic Directorate on February 22, 2014 at a massive rally in Doral, Florida took part in the protest to demonstrate his solidarity.

The Castro and Maduro regime's want to impose totalitarianism on the people of Venezuela and maintain it on the Cuban people and are using all the means at their disposal. At the same time the free peoples of Cuba and Venezuela are joining together in a struggle to free themselves of these two tyrants using nonviolent means. 

They need your solidarity.

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