Communist Cuba, shrill dissonance
at Rio's summit
Brasilia, June of 1999
Most Excellent Chiefs of State and of Governments:
We ad our welcomes to those that Brazil, its government and its people, offer your esteemed Excellencies- with the traditional hospitality of this the Land of the Holy Cross- to contribute to the full success of the Latin America and Caribbean-European Union Summit in Rio de Janeiro, old political capital of our country and today a worthy site for an event of such world importance.
Full success, yes, Excellencies, in relation to the "important common objectives" of the Summit as enunciated by your governments in a previous document, including the "consolidation of democracy", the "promotion" of the so called "human rights", and the war against terrorism, so that in that manner "the challenges of the next century can be met in both regions".
Full success, above all, in the re-affirmation of the "common values" also pointed out by your Excellencies, without which the before mentioned "important common objectives" would have no sense or foundation. To them made reference the President of Brazil, Dr. Fernando Henrique Cardoso when he recognized that those " fundamental values of the civilization that was established in the Americas" are the fruit of the "European heritage", or if we may ad, of the Christian civilization.
Within this encouraging framework, Excellencies, the totally off-key note is given by the presence of communist Cuba, heretofore known as he "Pearl of the Antilles", and which for over 40 years cries from underneath an unyielding totalitarian regime.
Communist Cuba, that only briefly after the Pope's visit in January of 1998 ran directly counter to his Holiness's explicit wishes that "Cuba open itself to the world", and has closed more and more its jails' doors and tightened its police state activities, legal and psychological, with which it oppresses 12 million of our Latin American brothers.
Communist Cuba, which in a defiant manner has just promulgated its "Law for the National Independence", which in reality, is literally a "Muzzle Law" reflecting a return to the worse Communist or Nazi eras.
Communist Cuba, that has recently been condemned by the United Nations' Human Rights Commission at Geneva; by the Organization of American States' Inter American Human Rights Commission, whose report underlined the aberrant totalitarianism of the "socialist legal system" contained in its present Constitution and in its Penal Code; by the Inter American Press Society; by the French Reporters sans Frontieres (RSF), etc.
Communist Cuba, that according to the Vatican agency "Fides", and also according to reputable sources within the island, increases religious persecution against those practicing religion, against political prisoners, and even against children; that through legal regulations such as Article 62 reduces all freedoms by denouncing as "punishable" the slightest statements of displeasure with communism; that continues being a terrorists' sanctuary and maintains close relations with leftist insurgency groups in Latin America, according to a recent report.
Communist Cuba, that mocks the international community signing democracy documents, like the ones at the Ibero-American Summits of Santiago de Chile and Oporto, Portugal which it signed but did not comply with; that promulgated a Law of Foreign Investment that establishes semi-slave work with the complicity of unscrupulous foreign investors violating the labor protection norms of the International Labor Organization; and whose alleged achievements in education and health have been shown false by serious studies that show the superficiality of the "official statistics" manufactured for public relations purposes.
Most Excellent Chiefs of State and of Governments, faced with the Cuban peoples' drama which everyday becomes more acute, it is no longer possible to remain silent. Inexplicably, documents that emanated from the Rio Group, to which the most important Latin American countries belong, have invariably condemned the so-called "external embargo", but have maintained a systematic silence with respect to the root of the problem which is the "internal embargo" that the Communist regime has over the Cuban people.
From Havana, the Lawton Foundation for Human Rights, a non-government organization presided by Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet, and considered illegal by the Communist regime, has just finished proclaiming to the free world a transcendental documenting in which it affirms that "the communist system is the origin and cause of Cubans' hardships and grave situation" and that "the Cuban people are the Castro-communist dictatorship's hostages", asking for the "urgent solidarity and support of the international community", as well as the "collaboration of the international press to publicize Cuba's acute problem". In the same way, the humanitarian Pax Christi organization, in a recent report delivered in Geneva, also makes an urgent call to the international community so that it will exert effective and "persistent pressures" on the Cuban regime until such time as in the island prison a democratic system is established.
The Rio Summit- in its before mentioned "common objectives", which include the "consolidation of democracy" and the promotion of "human rights"; in its transcendental deliberations; and in its announced Policy Declaration- offers your Excellencies an unmatched opportunity to attend and to make yours those vehement cries for freedom for the Cuban people. Said cries without a doubt concur with the desires of the immense majority of the Euro-American peoples and with those of the Pope who from Cuba implored for the world to open its arms to the Cuban people. What is totally different is to open the tyrant's arms!
With our best wishes for the Almighty to assist your Excellencies in this great endeavor, we are subscribed respectfully,
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