Cuban Women Demand Visas for Wives of the Cuban Five
Women of the world called for the creation of an international commission to demand Washington issue visas for two of the wives of the Cuban Five
by Yaile Balloqui Bonzon
May 16, 2007
Reprinted from Juventud Rebelde
«To demand the right of Olga Salanueva and Adriana Perez to visit their husbands imprisoned in the United States is not a whim, but a consecrated right they have as human beings and as the women they are.»
This was a statement in the final declaration of the Women’s International Campaign, which took place from March 8 to May 14 in Havana with the goal of mobilize women worldwide to support the right of the woman to meet with their husbands. The men, Rene Gonzalez and Gerardo Hernandez, who are in jail in US prisons for fighting terrorism, have been prohibited from seeing their wives for eight years.
During the campaign —which was has been promoted with the support of the more than 315 committees in solidarity with the Cuban Five in more than a hundred countries— the decision was made to mobilize an international commission to demand the Bush administration to issue visas for the two women, which have been denied to both of them seven times before.
Other actions proposed by the organizers of the campaign were to publicize the constant refusals of visas in the international media and to present of that case to representatives and parliament members of different countries.
During the meeting, lawyer Roberto Gonzalez emphasized that Rene Gonzalez and Gerardo Hernandez are being punished in this way because they refused to sign —on several of the occasions they were offered— a document admitting their guilt, which is not the case.
The lawyer also highlighted that the judicial process against the Cuban Five is currently awaiting an oral hearing set for August 20, 2007. He noted that, given this long delay, it is important that the world campaign for their freedom continues to remain active.