Tuesday, October 5, 2010

LPP NEWS First Draft...

From Violating One Human Right to Three

This past July, the Castro regime announced it would "release" (more precisely, "forcibly exile") 52 political prisoners.

These 52 innocent men have been unjustly imprisoned since 2003 in violation of Article 9 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) -- to which Cuba is a signatory -- and states:

No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile.
Thus far, 39 have been forcibly exiled to Spain, none released in Cuba and 12 refuse to trade prison for banishment.

Therefore, as regards these 52, the Castro regime is now in violation of three fundamental human rights -- Articles 9, 13 and 15 of the UDHR.
Article 9 for those exiled and still imprisoned. Plus Article 13, which states:

(1) Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each state.

(2) Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country.
And Article 15:

(1) Everyone has the right to a nationality.

(2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality.

Yet, some still have the audacity to hail this as progress on human rights.
S: Capitol Hill Cubans

Photo of the Day

(Image: A young cowboy cries as he rides his horse during the annual International Livestock Show in Havana, Cuba, on Saturday, Oct. 2. By Javier Galeano/AP.)
Cuba’s National Office of Statistics conducted a survey of 40,005 homes, between February and April 2010, on the usage of information technologies and communications by Cubans on the island.
According to the survey:
  • 31% had use and access to personal computers (persons 6 years and up)
  • 2.9% had use and access to the Internet (persons 12 years and up)
  • 35.6% had used Internet services once a week (persons 12 years and up)
  • 5.8 had use and access to electronic mail (persons 12 years and up)
  • 2.5% have a cellular telephone (persons 12 years and up)
Click here to read the report.
Columnist Miguel Cossio discusses in El Nuevo Herald Raúl Castro’s firm steps in consolidating the military elite in power.
The recent naming of a colonel to head CIMEX, Cuba’s largest commercial corporation, confirms the ascension of what Cossio calls the Putin generation in Cuba that is not just merely surviving but perpetuating the lineage:
This elite class, composed of old and trusted comrades-in-arms and a brood of young “officials,” comes from family or his inner circle, and fully controls the destiny of the economy and national finances.
Read the rest of the piece here.
[H/T: Penúltimos Días]

El perro que ladra…

Barking dogs don't bite, and especially leftist dogs like Ecuadorean president Rafael Correa.
After his drama-queen performance last week in which he dared protesting police officers to kill him and then started running like a scared schoolgirl into hiding, the not-so-tough-guy president swore he would not forgive or forget the police.  Their protests of the cuts in pay and benefits passed by Correa's congress was tantamount to treason, and the thug-in-a-dress swore he would never back down and give in to their demands.
Like a good leftist dog, Correa has got plenty of bark, but not much bite.
Ecuador increases police and army wages
The Ecuadorean government has increased army and police pay for several ranks, just days after police rebelled over a law scrapping their bonuses.
Officials said the rise was not linked to last Thursday's unrest during which several people died.
Soldiers had to rescue President Rafael Correa from a Quito hospital where he had taken refuge after coming under tear gas fire from disaffected police.
Mr Correa has said revolt amounted to a coup attempt.
The pay increases, of between $400 (£251) and $570 (£359) are for four ranks of the military and police, and will be backdated to January this year.

Rick Sanchez apologizes to Jon Stewart

Rick Sanchez has apologized to Jon Stewart for calling him a bigot.
Rick Sanchez_20101001171241_JPG
Wife: Rick Sanchez Apologizes to Jon Stewart
(NewsCore) - Former CNN anchor Rick Sanchez apologized to comedian Jon Stewart for calling him a "bigot" in radio interview last week, Sanchez's wife revealed Monday.
"Rick apologized to jon stewart today," Sanchez's wife, Suzanne, wrote on her Facebook page Monday -- adding that her husband's tough work schedule caused him to "mangle his thought process" and make explosive remarks during the now infamous Thursday radio interview.
"They had a good talk. jon was gracious and called rick, 'thin-skinned,'" she wrote.
So Rick's recent tough work schedule is to blame for his "mangled thought process"?
What's the excuse for the rest of his career?

October 04, 2010

U.S. offers shelter to émigrés now in Spain; almost all are expected to accept new plan

From The Associated Press:Washington is working on a plan to bring the vast majority of exiled Cuban political prisoners from Spain to the United States, a senior State Department official told The Associated Press on (pic) Monday.
The official said nearly all of some three dozen former prisoners who are already in Spain, along with more than 100 family members, are likely to accept the offer.
The State Department official said consular officers at the U.S. Embassy in Madrid began contacting all the freed political prisoners about the option three weeks ago and the vast majority expressed interest in going to the United States, where many have family.
One family's case has already been processed, and more interviews are expected to take place later this week in Madrid.
The official said the program — called the Significant Public Benefit Parole program — has been in effect in other parts of the world, but had not yet applied to Cuba.
Under the plan, each applicant will have to apply for entry, a process that could take up to a month. The Cubans will enter the United States without formal residency status, but will be able to apply for residency once there. They will also be issued work permits almost immediately.
For more details from The Associated Press, click here. An article in The Miami Herald can be accessed here.
Posted by Renato Perez at 05:15 PM in Dissidents, human rights, The World
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Trove of songs taped in pre-Castro Cuba is turned into a nostalgic CD by music lover

Lovers of pop music from pre-Castro Cuba, rejoice. A "new" recording of songs made half-a-century ago is being featured in the National Public Radio website.
"The (pic2) Lost Cuban Trios of Casa Marina" is a CD of recordings made in the 1950s by two Polish brothers, Harry and Morris Schrage, who had settled in Matanzas province. The two befriended musicians who played in a Havana brothel, Casa Marina, and recorded at least 50 of their performances in audio tape.
After the Revolution, Harry moved to Seattle, where he stored away the tapes. When he died, Morris obtained the tapes from his brother's widow and turned them into a CD that was released in August.
Morris, now 80, tells NPR he plans to return to Cuba and find either the musicians or their surviving relatives.
To read more about the CD and  listen to clips from the songs (remember La Última Noche?) click here. (ILLUSTRATION is from the CD jacket.)
–Renato Pérez Pizarro.
Posted by Renato Perez at 08:46 AM in Fidel Castro, Music
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S: Cuban Colada 

Read more at the Realcubablog ...

Terrible president and even worse sportsman
Oct. 4 - Watch Bolivian President Evo Morales taking part in a "friendly" soccer game in Bolivia on Sunday, October 3.
Evo, wearing the number 10, kicked a rival player in his testicles. He seemed to be upset at a previous play.
Incredible that this moron could be president of a country!
And on top of everything else, an earthquake!
Oct. 4 -   A 5.1-magnitude earthquake rattled items on shelves at the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay and shook other parts of eastern Cuba on Monday, but there were no reports of injuries or damage.
The quake struck shortly before 8 a.m. local time (8 a.m. EDT; 1200 GMT) and was centered 30 miles (50 kilometers) east of Santiago, the island's second-largest city, and 25 miles (45 kilometers) south of the city of Guantanamo, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.
Santiago residents reported feeling the ground shake, but there was no word of distress calls to civil defense authorities. AP
Two ETA terrorists arrested in Spain said that they received military training in Venezuela in 2008
Oct. 4 - Two suspected members of the armed Basque separatist movement ETA arrested in Spain last week have said they received weapons training in Venezuela, a court document released Monday showed.
During police questioning following their arrest the two detainees, Juan Carlos Besance and Javier Atristain, said they took part in the training course in July and August 2008, according to court papers obtained by AFP.
The course involved training in marksmanship, disassembling and cleaning guns and communicating in code, they said. It was offered by other ETA members in Venezuela as well as Chilean and Venezuelan citizens. Read more at the realcubablog

Cuba to free more prisoners, human rights leader says

By David Ariosto, CNN
October 4, 2010 10:12 p.m. EDT
  • Nine prisoners are reportedly in talks to be freed
  • Some of the men have been behind bars for as many as 10 years
  • Many were convicted of violent crimes
Havana, Cuba (CNN) -- Cuba is set to further empty its jails, adding at least another nine inmates to a list of those it plans to free, a human rights leader said Monday.
Head of the island's independent Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation, Elizardo Sanchez, said another nine prisoners -- many of whom were convicted of violent crimes -- recently met with Interior Ministry officials to discuss their freedom and exile.
"This is all positive," said Sanchez. "But we are looking for their unconditional freedom."
Recently released prisoners have all left for either Spain or Chile, though it is unclear if they are permitted to stay or are instead compelled to leave the country.
Sanchez said the men, some who have been behind bars for as many as 10 years, were asked to identify the names of eight family members that they would be allowed to bring with them into exile.
"These are not prisoners of conscience," Sanchez said, distinguishing the nine men from a group of political activists rounded up in a state crackdown on internal dissent in 2003. "But they are political prisoners," he added.
The nine inmates, many of whom engaged in crimes that range from hijacking and piracy to terrorism, would join 52 so-called "prisoners of conscience" Cuba pledged to free following a deal brokered by the island's Roman Catholic Church and Spain's Foreign Ministry.
International pressure grew when one jailed dissident, Orlando Zapata Tamayo, died earlier this year following a prolonged hunger strike protesting inmate living conditions.
The Cuban government responded by promising to free the group by November in the largest release of political prisoners in more than a decade.
To date, some 36 of the 52 jailed dissidents have been freed. But the total number of dissidents behind bars remains unclear.
Amnesty International, a human rights organization banned from operating in Cuba, says only one dissident will remain in prison following the groups' release.
But Sanchez claims that more than one hundred political prisoners are still behind bars, enduring what he described as long and politically-motivated prison sentences for what he acknowledges are legitimate convictions.
The Cuban government has not commented on the possible inmate release.

In the Puerta de Alcalá. Manuel Ubals , Jorge Luis Tanquero , Blas Giraldo , Mustafa Felipe , Arturo Pérez and Antonio Villarreal (left to right )

The United States welcomes former Cuban prisoners

There are six of the Cuban dissidents who are still in Madrid, of which twenty untotal to reach Spain . Would be under a special parole program , an official of the Department of State.
Former Cuban political prisoners and their relatives living in Spain may come quickly to the United States under a special parole program , announced on Monday a State Department official .

Applications for ex-prisoners for their entry into the United States will be processed on a case by case, but are expected to take an average of about a month , the official said .

Most of the 36 recently released prisoners and dozens of his relatives who are in Spain looking to move to the United States, but U.S. immigration procedures prohibit it because they are in a safe haven in Spain.

State and Homeland Security agreed to allow the entry so under the Significant Public Benefit Parole Program ( significant public interest benefits , SPBP ) , said the official , who under the rules of the State Department can not identify or quote directly .

The SPBP has been used in the past to allow entry to the United States and Iraqi people and Colombian union activists who fear for their lives , the official said El Nuevo Herald in a report by telephone from Washington.

Consular officials at the U.S. Embassy in Madrid have contacted several former political prisoners to inform them of program eligibility and other requirements, he added.

of claims already processed and interviewed several other former political prisoners this week , he added. The SPBP allows newcomers quickly get work permits and residence eventually .

Former political prisoner from Madrid Norman Hernandez confirmed that consular officers have requested information from them former prisoners and their relatives, but appeared to be unclear on the details.

" We do not know under what conditions would the U.S. entry , "Hernandez told El Nuevo Herald. " We want all families to leave under the conditions that we are political refugees . "

"I 've become very happy and sad, because it would be a burden on our families, " the United States, Hernandez said when told the information officer of the Department of State.

The Cuban leader Raul Castro promised to release on July 7 to 52 political prisoners, the last remaining in prison for a 2003 raid on the 75 peaceful dissidents sentenced to prison terms of up to 28 years.

Thirty -six have been released in several small groups after agreeing to go directly from prison to the Havana airport and fly to Spain , along with several family members each. Three have agreed to leave the island , but waiting for spaces in passenger jets bound for Madrid.

Cubans who have recently arrived in Spain have complained about their poor housing conditions , uncertainties about their legal status in the European country and receive stipends to cover their expenses.

12 other jailed dissidents have said they will refuse to leave Cuba, but is expected to release next month as part of the agreement of July 7, Castro with the Catholic Church in Cuba and the Spanish government .

S: primeraedicionweb.com / translate LPPNEWS FrontLine Results