Cuban envoy: US protecting terrorists
by Barry Alleyne
Oct. 8, 2007
Reprinted from The Nation Newspaper (Barbados)
That was the spirited call made Saturday by Cuba's ambassador to Barbados, Pedro Garcia Roque, on the 31st anniversary of the terrorist bombing of Cubana Flight 1201.
The DC-8 aircraft crashed just off the West Coast of Barbados on October 6, 1976, killing all 73 people on board when a bomb exploded just after take-off from the then Seawell International Airport.
Garcia Roque made it clear that the United States should be held accountable for allowing Cuban-born revolutionaries Luis Posada Carriles and Orlando Bosch to walk around as free men in Dade County, Florida.
Those two, with the support of Venezuelan accomplices Freddy Lugo and CIA agent Hernan Ricardo, were responsible for the terrorist act.
"Thirty-one years after this abominable crime, the United States government continues protecting these terrorists, and refuses to complete the appeal of extradition formulated by Venezuela two years ago," Garcia Roque told a gathering just before laying a memorial wreath at a monument erected in Paynes Bay, St James, in memory of those who died after the airplane was bombed.
The ambassador said after the September 11 terrorist attack on the United States, its government established a policy making it mandatory for every country to deny protection not only to terrorists, but to friends of terrorists. "Yet, it is they who protect terrorists," Garcia Roque claimed.
"The United States government has launched wars, threatened the world with an all-out war to fight terrorism, but they still refuse to take effective actions at home to show the world they really oppose terrorism," the ambassador said.
He said Cuba strongly condemned the United States for continuously ignoring an order of extradition by Venezuela, and said the United States was solely responsible for protection of the terrorists at the service of the Central Intelligence Agency.
Saturday's wreath-laying was attended by Cuban coaches who work in Barbados, Guyana's Honorary Consul, Norman Faria, Edmund Douglas, chairman of the Cuban Five Justice Committee, and David Denny, president of the Barbados and Cuba Friendship Association.
Of the 73 who died in the crash, 57 were Cubans, 11 Guyanese and five from the Republic of South Korea.