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Message to Cubans Within and Outside Cuba and to International Public Opinion from Jorge Luis Garcia Perez “Antunez” on the 15th of September

Read in the voice of Nonaida Paseiro Perez, the women’s right movement formed from the Rosa Parks Women’s Movement for Civil Rights.

After feeling my health worsen due to my hunger strike that lasted several days, and reacting to what appeared about the start and the demand of my protest in various media, I wanted to clarify the following.

First: I started the hunger strike on Friday September 7 at 6 pm, and not on Monday the 10th as did other opponents after giving a press conference.

Second: My demand is the release of political prisoner Jorge Vazquez Chaviano, or to give him a solution satisfying and acceptable to him. I am also protesting for the deplorable situation of the human rights in Cuba that occurs because of the systematic political accusation against me which is implied in the practice of house arrest.

For reasons of principle and not trusting in the existing health care system, controlled by another political policy, do not accept medical attention. From the previous statement it follows that only in an unconscious state if on their own initiative relatives or countrymen would take me to a health center due to their human feelings and sentiments.

Translated by Steven Guas, Michael Martinez, Austin Sprinkle, Richard Hidalgo, Matthew Marini 

September 15 2012

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I stay in Cuba and do not leave because otherwise I cannot imagine having to ask for a white card or exit permit in order to permanently choose the place where I want to spend the rest of my life. I stay in Cuba because I could not bear the humiliation of having to seek permission from my country’s oppressors to return to my homeland at a time and for a period of their choosing. I prefer to stay because I fear that I will forget how to say “gracias” and “adiós,” and adapt to saying “thank you” and “bye.” Or will trade “está bien” for “O.K.”

I stay because in the hot afternoons of summer I prefer the breeze that comes down from the mountain to huddling in rooms where boxes with fake air called air-conditioning seem to chill you to your bones. I believe it is better to stay and thus avoid the tormented nostalgia of not being able to return to the plot of land where I was born, or the thought that my community, the Yuma, might say I am a foreigner and not a Cuban.

If you ask me why I stay, I would say because I believe in change and I want to be as close as possible when it comes. I stay because, if I left, my oppressors would no doubt say there is one less — one less anti-establishment voice, one less person protesting in the streets. I stay because, by doing so, I help to discredit those who say the ultimate objective of any dissident is to leave Cuba. I stay because every day I remember the torture and mistreatment I suffered for more than seventeen years in political prison, where they did not even let me attend my mother’s funeral.

I choose to stay each time I see the bite marks from the political police’s attack dogs. I stay because I have no feeling for Anglo-Saxon culture. Because my language is Spanish and my classics are those of Cervantes and not Shakespeare. Because since I was little I babbled the word “mamá” and not “mother.” And because no one can take away my second surname — my mother’s family name — as is common practice in countries of the north.

I stay because I cannot stand another way of life being imposed on me, living with strangers and being far away from where there is so much to do. I stay because my efforts at liberation are aimed at encouraging the thousands and thousands of my compatriots who have struggled for the return of a free Cuba, such as the brothers with long prison sentences, their family members, the victims and finally the a very significant segment of my people forced into exile.

I believe that my duty before leaving is to fight for the return and reunion of everyone in a free Cuba. Therefore I stay, especially when I imagine the sadness of our martyrs who died on foreign soil without seeing their fatherland free — martyrs like Julio Machado, Mario Chanes de Armas, Eusebio Peñalver, Msgr. Agustín Román, Fr. Loreto and all the many anonymous heroes buried in faraway lands. For all of them and for those who died in Castro’s dungeons, firing squads or the Straits of Florida. Or those like Laura Pollán, Osvaldo Payá and Harold Cepero, victims of the subtle brutality of Castro’s tyranny. For all of the above I stay.

September 14 2012

The Rosa Parks Women’s Movement for Civil Rights announces that on Thursday it held its second weekly march in honor of the fallen despite the brutal arrests the members were subject to during the first march on 30 August; so we put out a wake-up call to national and international public opinion urging them to closely follow our march and that we fear for our lives.

These marches, which are called the weekly Rosa Parks Movement Marches to Honor the Fallen replace the earlier marches that were held by the women on the first of each month and will begin at the national headquarters of this movement which is located on Seventh Street South, No. 5, between Paseo Marti and Primera del Este in the municipality of Villa Clara, Placetas. The path of the march will be from Paseo to Primera del Norte, where it will turn left, returning to Park Cazayas to the Catholic church of St. Athanasius at this location.

These marches will be extended to the length and breadth of the island as above. The activists of the Movement chose Thursdays unanimously to hold the march, as the Day of the Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Civic Resistance Front and Civil Disobedience  to which we are affiliated, and our dress will remain our usual black clothes of mourning, as we reflect on those who fell defending the homeland, praying the Our Father for each arrest caused by the repressive forces.

St. Athanasius Catholic Church, where the women of the Rosa Parks attend Mass every Thursday, is located on West Second Street and the corner of North First Street in the municipality Placetas, Villa Clara province.

Submitted in Placetas on September 5, 2012.

September 5 2012

The National General Strike is an important initiative sponsored by the Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Front for Civic Resistance and Disobedience. As its name indicates, this initiative seeks a partial paralysis of the entire national infrastructure through strong and systematic actions by the forces of internal resistance. In its first and second stages the General Strike is part of a continuing campaign of non-cooperation. This strike can be successful only after a real and resolute decision by a significant number of citizens to deny responsibility for, or to cooperate with, the oppressive regime.

It must be made clear that, although the National Front is calling for and sponsoring this crucial campaign, it can only be viable with the participation of each and every constituency for change, whether it be the National Front, political parties, movements, regional coalitions — in other words the energetic forces of Cuban resistance, which are the primary vehicle of democratic change.

The campaign for the National General Strike will use only peaceful means so that no constituencies which take part can in any way confuse the strike with economic sabotage, or the destruction of or attacks on state or private property.

It is the policy of the General Strike to be dissuasive and persuasive, acknowledging that, to succeed, we must work patiently, motivated by great faith and certainty. The only true potential for change comes from citizens who support us, as well as those who simply look upon us with indifference, fear or admiration for what we are doing. This includes those we see walking beside us, in line behind us, from a private office, and even those attacking us in so-called acts of repudiation. All can unite with us and contribute to the great day of the General Strike.

The campaign for a General Strike can, in a powerful way, also help to do away with the worrying fear of change that persists in many areas of society, especially among those who are ill-informed and those most compromised by the current regime.

The concept must be clearly understood, both by the promoters of the General Strike as well as by those who hear its message. The purpose of the strike is not to destroy, obstruct or cause damage to anyone or anything. Its intention is to peacefully boycott the means of production that confer profits on those who misgovern the millions of Cubans who are hungry, oppressed, and without liberty or the right to protest.

The Strike is a decision and commitment by everyone, or by a great and significant majority of Cubans, to say, “Enough!” The strategy of the General Strike is in accordance with basic, universally recognized rights and freedoms, which — together with the peaceful tactics it employs — gives it legitimacy and puts it in harmony with human dignity itself, something of primary importance.

Though a recent idea, one born that was born in Cuba, the strategy of the General Strike Campaign is based on innumerable precedents and inspired by similar actions around the globe. These have been successful in spite of a number of differing circumstances, such as culture and language.

The change which the General Strike seeks is viable under any circumstance in the struggle against the oppressive and totalitarian system.

The first phase of the campaign is outlined below:

To effect a total or partial strike before doing the necessary preparation or raising public awareness is so unlikely as to be almost impossible — even more so in a country like ours in which repression affects everyone and is everywhere, where a sinister and comprehensive system of repression controls, spies on, and penalizes the slightest and most moderate expression of discontent or dissent. It is unthinkable and impossible to bring the country to a total or partial standstill when little or next to nothing has been done domestically to systematically provide information to the average Cuban, who is misinformed and bombarded by the state media monopoly.

Therefore, the Orlando Zapata Tamayo Front for Civic Resistance proposes an introductory phase to develop an intense and on-going public awareness campaign. This program will present the citizenry with mottoes and slogans with social themes, which will initially identify us as being concerned with the needs of the people.

This will help convince Cubans of the nature of their situation, that they have rights, and that these right must be respected. This information blitz will be carried out through visible channels such as text messaging, Twitter accounts, CD’s, flash drives, printed material, as well as through pamphlets, placards and signs posted in visible, public spaces.

We can also solicit support, through broadcasts and other media, from friends who support the Cuban cause. This duration of this initial campaign, to be called “Cubans, Defend Your Rights,” will be open-ended if it is determined that it can— given its importance  — be postponed, or rather extended, to other phases of the larger campaign.

This first phase is one of outreach, both internally and externally, to the public, which has the potential to play a leading role in the very necessary and essential change. It will be launched in light of the hard reality that most Cubans lack access to the internet, satellite television or cable.

Regrettably, outside of Cuba a not insignificant number of people are able to analyze Cuban reality from the viewpoint of an open society with a free flow of information, one of numerous advantages common in other countries. In Cuban society only the official version can be published, and only when and how the governing elite decide to publish it.

Luis García Pérez Antúnez

Secretary General of the Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Front for Civic Resistance and Civil Disobedience, who will neither be silenced nor will leave Cuba, and who reiterates that his primary objective today is the “National General Strike.”

Placetas, Cuba

 August 24 2012

Members and officers of the Orlando Zapata National Civic Resistance Front, meeting this Sunday, July 29, 2012, in Havana’s Rio Verde neighborhood, agreed by unanimous consensus to publish our full, open and unconditional support of two indisputable leaders of the Resistance, victims of a dirty and cunning maneuver of the Castro regime and its sinister political police in pursuit of political and moral disrepute.

Our coalition of coalitions raises its voice in support of Raúl Luís Risco Pérez and Eriberto Liranza Romero, president of the Pinar del Rio Democratic Alliance and the Cuban Youth Movement for Democracy, respectively, who in retaliation for their courageous and important pro-democracy activism, they are trying to demonize with all kinds of slander and even death threats.

Our Front, aware that the authorship of this strategy lies with the political police, not only reiterate our support for the brothers mentioned above but will hold the Castro dictatorship liable for what may happen.

United in thought and action, present at the meeting:

Jorge Luís García Pérez (Antúnez)
Sara Martha Fonseca Quevedo
Yanelys Cabrera Bouza
Julio Columbié Batista
Arturo Conde Zamora
Julio Ignacio León Pérez
Bartolo Márquez Alcebo

Also added:

Rolando Rodríguez Lobaina
Misael Valdez García
Martha Días Rondón
Rafael Leyva Leyva
Delmides Fidalgo López
Yoandris Montoya Avilés
Santos Fernández Sánchez
Yoan David González Milanés
Segundo Rey Cabrera González
Idania Yanes Contreras
Iris Tamara Pérez Aguilera
Damaris Moya Portielis
Ricardo Pupo Sierra
Leticia Ramos Herrería
Hermógenes Guerrero Gómez
José Díaz Silva

In a meeting held in the Rio Verde neighborhood, in the capital municipality of Boyeros, activists from different organizations of the internal opposition on various topics discussed Cuban issues, especially the struggle for democratic change in Cuba. They also discussed and analyzed the Front’s statues, program of struggle, and its rules; among them the most important agreements of the day on Sunday include:

Issue a public and timely statement of support for the opposition leaders and Eriberto Liranza Romero and Raúl Luis Risco Pérez, directors of our front and victims of a dirty, sneaky maneuver of a smear campaign by the regime and its sinister political police.

Continue with the restructuring of the structure and executive of the front, that is to adapt to the current and ever-changing and dynamic civic conditions. In this regard it was agreed by unanimous consensus to define the roles of regional coordinators in the west and east of the country taking into account the geopolitical and demographic characteristics of those regions.

In this regard the functions are as follows:

Western Regional coordinators:

In the provinces of Havana and Mayabeque:

Eriberto Liranza Romero, president of the Cuban Youth Movement for Democracy.

In the provinces of Pinar del Rio, Artemisa, Isla de Pino:

José Díaz Silva. President of the Opposition Movement for a New Republic

Eastern Regional Coordinators:

Provinces Las Tunas, Holguin and Granma:

Delmides Fidalgo Lopez

Provinces, Santiago de Cuba and Guantanamo:

Misael Garcia Valdez

As a colophon to the activity, a peaceful protest was held, a kind of lightening march of less than 100 yards where we chanted slogans for human rights, freedom of political prisoners and advocated for the campaign Towards the National Strike as well as harrangued loudly in support of opposition leaders and Eriberto Liranza Romero and Raúl Luis Risco Pérez, highlighting them as the sole and undisputed leaders of the Cuban Youth Movement for Democracy and the Democratic Alliance of Pinar del Rio, respectively, both groups founding members of the Front.

Also attending the meeting and march that was held in the street between 275th and 160th, Rio Verde Neighborhood, Boyeros Municipality, Havana, this July 29, 2012 were:

Jorge Luís García Pérez (Antúnez)
Sara Martha Fonseca Quevedo
Yanelys Cabrera Bouza
Julio Columbié Batista
Arturo Conde Zamora
Julio Ignacio León Pérez
Bartolo Márquez Alsebo
Raúl Luis Risco Pérez
Eriberto Liranza Romero

July 31 2012

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Executives and members of the Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Civic Resistance Front, raise their voices to condemn the cowardly assassination of prominent opposition leaders Oswaldo Payá Sardiñas, founder of the Varela Projects and founding president of the Christian Liberation Movement.  This Coalition of Coalitions shares in the grief of this Christian family, at a time when we find ourselves besieged by mobs of political police in Batey Grúa Nueva in the province of Ciego de Ávila.

The Front, a promoter of civil disobedience in Cuba, promoter of protests across the country, just today, the eve of Resistance Day, condemned the death in suspicious circumstances of this dear brother of ours and in honor of his memory and his history of struggle we are committed to continue faithful along this road.

The Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Civic Resistance Front demands that the Castro  regime  allow a delegation of international experts to conduct a competent and impartial investigation of this terrible and lamentable event, and the Front opposes the Cuban government being given the opportunity to undertake investigations, because it is inconceivable to give them this opportunity or to ask the perpetrators of the crime to undertake the investigation and to show the traces and proofs of the crime they themselves committed.

It would legitimize the dictatorship, it would present the assassination of Oswaldo Payá Sardiãs as a coincidence, an accident, more the responsibility of those who crashed their truck into the car in which our brothers Harold Cepero and Payá were traveling, than those who ordered them to do it. And we hold two people primarily responsible, the Castro regime in the persons of the brothers Fidel and Raúl Castro, uniquely and the maximally responsible for the murders of Orlando Zapata Tamayo, Wilman Villar Mendoza, Laura Inés Pollán Toledo, Juan Wilfredo Soto García, and now this terrible blow against one of the most charismatic, important and serious leaders of the Cuban opposition.

Oswaldo Payá Sardiñas, the Front sends its condolences to your family and may God give you peace.

From Grúa Nueva, Jorge Luis García Pérez Antúnez, Secretary General of the Front, who will not shut up and who will not leave Cuba, now with more reasons than ever, now for you, Oswaldo, we will continue the struggle.

We Are All Resistance, We Are All Payá.

July 23 2012

June 29, 2012.

This June 30 marked exactly one year since an event that occurred in the city of Vilnius, Lithuania, something that had no precedent in more than 50 years of struggle of the Cuban people for their freedom. It was then that a unanimous resolution was passed recognizing the Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Front of Civic Resistence and Civil Disobedience as a legitimate representative of the Cuban resistence. For the first time in a constitutive body of the United Nations, it was clear that it’s the people and not the oppressors who are the only principal factor in change.

Today, one year since this transcendental event, our coalition of coalitions feels more committed in its struggle for freedom and is redoubling its efforts for the National Strike as one of our strategies to achieve change.

Thank you for so much solidarity!

Coordinators in the West:
Eriberto Liranza Romero
José Díaz Silva

Provincial Delegate in Matanzas:
Leticia Ramos Herrería

Provincial Delegate in Cienfuegos:
Ricardo Pupo Sierra

Coordinator in the center of the country:
Idania Yánez Contreras

Delegate in Ciego de Ávila:
Julio Columbie Batista

Delegate in Camaguey:
Santos Fernández Sánchez

Coordinators in the East:
Delmides Fidalgo López
Misael Valdés García

National legal advisor:
Raúl Risco Pérez

Executive Director:
Yoan David González Milanes

National Coordinator:
Rolando Rodríguez Lobaina

Secretary General:
Jorge Luis García Pérez “Antúnez”

Translated by Regina Anavy

June 29 2012

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