Miami Five and Cuba50 get union and TUC backing
Campaign News | Tuesday, 16 September 2008
Unanimous support for motions at TUC
On Wedneday 10 September, the TUC Congress passed motions of support for the Miami Five and CSC's Cuba50 campaigning and celebratory events.
Representing the UK's six million trade union members, the TUC committed to supporting events to mark the 10th anniversary of the arrest of the five, and to pressure the UK government to persue an independent policy towards Cuba and improve trade and diplomatic links.
Full wording of the motions:
Congress deplores the continued imprisonment of the Miami Five in the USA and notes the 2008 Amnesty International Report's condemnation of the appeal process and the denial of the human right of visitation rights to the families of the Miami Five.
The Miami Five are Cuban men who are in a US prison, serving four life sentences and 75 years collectively, after being wrongly convicted in a US federal court in Miami on 8 June 2001. The Five were involved in monitoring the actions of Miami-based terrorist groups, in order to prevent terrorist attacks on their country of Cuba and never directed action at the US government. For 40 years, anti-Cuba terrorist organisations based in Miami have engaged in terrorist activities against Cuba, resulting in more than 3,000 deaths of Cubans, with the knowledge and support of the FBI and CIA.
Congress acknowledges the work of the Cuba Solidarity Campaign in its defence of the Miami Five, urges support and calls for:
i) a prompt retrial of the Five in any venue other than Miami;
ii) full visiting rights for all of the families in the meanwhile; and
iii) work with US unions to bring further pressure on the US administration.
Congress further calls on the General Council to support:
a) an autumn campaign of action, to include national press adverts calling for freedom for the Five, to mark the 10th anniversary of their imprisonment.
Moved by Unite, seconded by Unison.
2009 marks the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution and its achievements, including eradicating illiteracy, free education, plus greatly reduced infant mortality rates and increased life expectancy.
Congress expresses support for the right of Cuba to choose its own economic, social and political path and opposes the USA's illegal economic blockade. Congress applauds the 16th annual vote of the United Nations condemning the US trade embargo.
Congress recognises Cuba's international solidarity, with 37,000 Cuban medical professionals working for free in 79 countries; emergency aid in countries like Peru, Indonesia and Pakistan; Cuban medics restoring sight to a million Latin Americans previously suffering from cataracts; and the provision of 30,000 free scholarships to students from 21 countries to study in Cuba.
Congress agrees to support the proposal of the Cuba Solidarity Campaign (CSC) to celebrate Cuba's achievements and agrees to provide publicity and support for events organised under the Cuba50 banner.
Congress agrees to:
i) encourage affiliation to CSC; and
ii) invite a CTC speaker to Congress 2009.
Congress calls upon the General Council to lobby the UK Government to:
a) end its complicity with the US blockade and move to an independent policy respecting Cuban sovereignty;
b) improve trade and bilateral relations with Cuba; and
c) oppose all US extraterritorial threats against UK-based companies.
Congress further calls on the UK Government to send a high level delegation to Cuba, and invite a Parliamentary Ministerial delegation from Cuba to the UK to strengthen links and trade between our countries.
Moved by the FBU, seconded by Unison, GMB, UCATT, Unite.
- A short film about the Maimi Five
- Details of campaigning and events to mark the 10th anniversary of the arrest of the Five
- Watch the short film on the Five produced by Unite the union