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Guillermo Fariñas to the ECR: It is time not to step back

The EU should be aware of the fact that dealing with the Cuban regime means dealing with bandits, said Guillermo Fariñas, one of the most distinguished political activists and dissidents in Cuba, at the ECR Group meeting in Strasbourg.

The EU should be aware of the fact that dealing with the Cuban regime means dealing with bandits, said Guillermo Fariñas, one of the most distinguished political activists and dissidents in Cuba, at the ECR Group meeting in Strasbourg. Three years after being awarded the Sakharov prize for Freedom of Thought, Fariñas was finally allowed to travel to Europe and collect the prize.

It was the Czech Conservative MEP Edvard Kozusnik who nominated Fariñas for the 2010 prize and visited him in Cuba. “I myself have had direct experience with Communist regimes and by visiting Cuba I wanted to support all Cubans who contemplate change. Just as in socialist Czechoslovakia twenty years ago, the changes must be initiated by the will of the people of Cuba,” Kozusnik said.

As Guillermo emphasised in his speech, the European Conservatives and Reformists has been always committed to freedom. “Many of you have personally experienced oppression. This group was the most active in awarding the Sakharov prize not to me, but to the whole Cuban freedom movement.”

“Political changes always stem from social protest, and the level of social protest in Cuba is constantly growing. Several years ago, the regime expressed itself only through threats and violence. Now the language of the oppressors is more conciliatory. It is the right time to strengthen Cuban civil society as well as the pressure on the regime. I ask you not to abandon the Cuban people now.”

Guillermo Fariñas – is a Cuban doctor of psychology, independent journalist and political dissident in Cuba. He has conducted 23 hunger strikes over the years to protest various elements of the Cuban regime. He has stated that he is ready to die in the struggle against censorship in Cuba. In 2010 Fariñas was awarded the Sakharov Prize

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sakharov_Prize

for Freedom of Thought by the European Parliament.

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