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Date: Wed, 25 Oct 1995 18:34:51 GMT
Sender: Activists Mailing List <ACTIV-L@MIZZOU1.missouri.edu>
From: Marpessa Kupendua <nattyreb@ix.netcom.com>

Statement on Castro

By Assata Shakur, delivered at the Abyssinian Baptist Church, Harlem, NY, 23 October 1995

SIS. SAFIYA: I greet you on behalf of the over 150 political prisoners and prisoners of war languishing in the prisons and jails of the United States for daring to struggle for freedom, liberation, land and independence - from Geronimo ji jaga Pratt to Leonard Peltier, from Marilyn Buck to Janine Africa. Though they could not be here in body - know that they are here in spirit sharing this momentous occasion. It is in their name that I read (this) statement from an ex-political prisoner who is living exile - who would be languishing in the prisons of america if it was not for the solidarity of the Cuban people.


"Fifty years ago the United Nations organization was formed to promote peace and harmony and to achieve international cooperation in solving the economic, social and humanitarian problems of the world. The United Nations was formed to defend human rights, to defend fundamental freedoms and guarantee self-determination and sovereignty for all the peoples and all the nations of the world. As world leaders gather to celebrate this occasion, it is critical that oppressed people inside the United States ask them to listen to our grievances and to support our demands for liberty and justice. On this 50th anniversary it is only fitting that we condemn United States imperialism, and reiterate our support for the struggles of oppressed people all over the world. On this 50th anniversary it is only fitting that we ask the world to join us in condemning the racism, repression and exploitation of poor and oppressed people inside the United States, and to denounce the violations of our human rights and the cruel and inhuman treatment of so many of our people.

As an African-American political activist I join my sisters and brothers in demanding the total liberation of African people living in the United States. As an ex-political prisoner, I urge the people of the world to support us in our struggle to free all political prisoners inside the United States. As an ex-political prisoner I join the ranks of millions of people in the United States and in other countries who are demanding a fair trial for Mumia Abu Jamal who is the only United States political prisoner on death row. As an ex-political prisoner who lives in Cuba, I urge the United Nations organization to continue its struggle to end the cruel and immoral blockade against Cuba. As someone who lives in Cuba I can see first hand the devastating consequences that the vicious policies of the United States government have had on the Cuban people, especially the Cuban children.

I urge all people who are committed to liberty, who are committed to the principle of sovereignty and self-determination, to condemn all of the United States government's hostile policies against Cuba, to condemn the Helms-Burton Bill, and to demand an immediate end to the blockade against Cuba.

Free All Oppressed People Living in the United States!
Free All Political Prisoners and Prisoners of War!
Stop the Vicious and Immoral Blockade Against Cuba!

Assata Shakur

SIS. SAFIYA: All political prisoners languishing in the prisons and jails of the United States, some who have been in prison over 28 years, recognize and relate to the Cuban people and their leader, El Commandante Fidel Castro, as kindred spirits, comrades that dare to struggle against the tyranny of the north. On behalf of these political prisoners who, like the people of Cuba and the Cuban Revolution, has sacrificed much and continue to sacrifice in the struggle for freedom, liberation, land and independence.

Submitted by: Sis. Marpessa