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Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Free Cuba Foundation Statement Remembers Maleconazo 15 Years Later

Official Statement regarding today's events commemorating 'El Maleconazo" 

On August 5, 1994, thousands of Cubans took to the streets of Old Havana to deliver a message to Fidel Castro. This message had long been bottled up inside the individual consciousness of the Cuban people for almost 40 years.

Nonviolent theorists write of a "paradox of repression" where the "use of violent repression can contribute to the instability of the regime that sponsors it." On July 13, 1994 the Cuban dictatorship carried out a massacre in which 37 men, women, and children were extrajudicially executed. But unlike on other occasions this time there were survivors, who spoke out and denounced the atrocity. This violent repression was a powerful contributing factor to the instability that led to a social explosion.

The powder-keg that was set off resulted in what we today call, ‘El Maleconazo”. Thousands of Cubans marched down the streets, demanding their "libertad" - freedom. Yet 15 years later, the Cuban people still long for freedom, as hundreds languish in Cuban prisons for merely speaking their mind and protesting a dictatorship that has continually denied the Cuban people their basic human rights.

The Free Cuba Foundation supports the brave efforts of these men, women, and children, who risked their lives to denounce years of Communist repression, as well as the non-violent activists who continue to fight for freedom. We hope that the protests of August 5, 1994 will not die in vain, and that the Cuban people can one day rightfully reclaim their "libertad".

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