Monday, January 23, 2006

Cuba's President Denounces US Provocation

Cuba's Castro calls for protest at U.S. mission

January 23, 2006

By Marc Frank

HAVANA (Reuters) - Cuban President Fidel Castro accused the United States on Sunday of trying to torpedo relations and harboring Cuban-born terrorists, then called a protest in front of the U.S. diplomatic mission for Tuesday.

Castro, in a three-hour televised appearance, charged that a huge electronic ticker tape mounted across the fifth floor of the U.S. diplomatic mission in downtown Havana aimed to end minimal relations under which each country maintains Interests Sections in the other's capital.

Cuba's President Fidel Castro gestures during a live television broadcast in Havana January 21, 2006. Castro accused the United States on Sunday of trying to torpedo relations and harboring Cuban-born terrorists, then called a protest in front of the U.S. diplomatic mission for Tuesday.

The two countries, bitter foes since Castro came to power in a 1959 revolution, do not have formal diplomatic relations and the United States has maintained a trade embargo against the Communist-run nation since 1962.

"The U.S. government ... is deliberately trying to force a rupture in the actual diplomatic relations," Castro charged.

"The gross provocation by the U.S. Interests Section in Havana can have no other purpose. ... They know no government in the world could allow it," he said, noting his government's diplomatic protests had been ignored.

For a week the ticker tape has flashed human rights messages and calls for democracy by various personalities, including leaders of east-European revolts against Communism such as former Polish President Lech Walesa and Czech leader Vaclav Havel, along with news, in nine-foot high crimson letters.

Cuba purchases around $400 million worth of food for cash each year from the United States under a 2000 amendment to the trade embargo.

Castro said he was taking measures to insure food supplies were not interrupted, without explaining further.

Castro also charged a Tuesday immigration hearing for Cuban-born (Luis) Posada Carriles was aimed at granting him conditional parole.

Posada, 77, has been held by the United States since May for illegally crossing the border into Texas from Mexico.

Posada is wanted by Cuba and Venezuela, where he is a citizen, for a string of bombings and other attacks against Cuban targets, including the blowing up of a Cuban commercial airliner in 1976, killing all 73 people aboard, and bombings of Cuban hotels and night spots in the late 1990s.

The United States has said Posada will not be extradited to either country and has refused to charge him with any other crimes.

"On January 24, when the status of the ferocious terrorist will be reviewed, the people of the capital will march with all their exemplary revolutionary discipline and unity in front of the interests Section of the fraudulent and bastardly government of George W. Bush," Castro said.

1 comment:

Cuba Journal said...

Fidel Calls for March on US Office

Havana, Jan 23 (Prensa Latina) Cuban President Fidel Castro has called on the people of Havana to stage a giant march on January 24 in front of the US Interest Section (USINT), in response to new Washington provocations.

The march will be broadcast live through Cubavision, Educativo and
Cubavision International channels, Radio Rebelde and Radio Habana
Cuba beginning at 8:00 local time, according to a note released Monday by Granma daily.

In a special TV appearance Sunday evening, the Cuban leader recalled US authorities will review that day the residential status of infamous Cuban-born terrorist Luis Posada Carriles, amid versions of his imminent liberation.

Fidel Castro denounced the US government´s steps to release him and made a chronology of what happened since he arrived on US territory in March last year.

Posada Carriles, currently detained in favorable conditions in that northern nation, is responsible for the explosion of a civil plane in Barbados airspace
in October 1976 that killed 73 people.

The White House, said the statesman, has never responded the Cuban question on the illegal entry of the confessed criminal to United States, and ignored the Venezuelan request of his extradition due to his crimes.

The Cuban leader in his TV appearance last night also went over the subversive activities carried out by USINT chief Michael Parmly since his arrival to Havana.

These include a screen with messages designed to provoke viewers here in another destabilization effort by that nation.

The messages, originally taken from Martin Luther King and the UN
Declaration on Human Rights, are an "outrage and grossly violated by theUS every day," stated the Cuban head of State.