Miami Five ad appears in New York Times

Campaign News | Thursday, 4 March 2004

Worldwide donations paid for publicity

Despite Bush administration attempts to stop it, groups of friendship with Cuba finally managed to have their full page advertisement on the plight of five Cubans imprisoned in the US published in the New York Times on March 3rd.

The CSC in Britain donated £3,000 towards the cost of placing the ad.

The idea of the full-page ad story is to raise the awareness of the US people about the situation of five Cubans who are serving tough sentences in separate prisons, the website reported.

Solidarity groups were able to afford the ad-story thanks to donations from friendship organizations around the world, including groups in Miami opposed to Washington's hostile policy towards Cuba.

From $10,800 raised by German friends in the "Basta Ya!" network, to over $10,000 raised by the Cuban progressive community in Miami, donations from Spain, Belgium, Italy, France, Colombia, Argentina, South Africa, the UK, Puerto Rico, Ecuador, Australia, Canada, and other countries, and all across the United States, flowed in, said the National Committee to Free the Five.

Some donations were sequestered in transfer by the US Treasury under the embargo laws but were later released after protests form groups all around the world (See: Victory for Five Campaign on this page).

Rene Gonzalez, Gerardo Hernandez, Fernando Gonzalez, Antonio Guerrero and Ramon Labanino, internationally known as the Miami Five, were persecuted and sentenced after a trial marked by numerous irregularities, their lawyers hold.

Accused of conspiracy and acting as foreign agents, their real "crime" was gathering information about terrorist activities carried out by anti-Cuban organizations in Miami, Florida. They were trying to prevent the death of Cuban and even United States citizens, solidarity groups assert.

They have an appeal hearing at a Miami courtroom pending for March 10, with three judges from the Atlanta Appeal Court.

The ad-story appeared only in all printed editions of the New York Times newspaper throughout the United States.

The Free the Five Committee praises all friends of the Cuban Five who worked on this effort, and who will continue to educate, agitate and organize until their freedom.

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