Free The 5 Heroes Now

"16 years Is Too Long" - a video explaining the case of the Cuban 5 clearly and simply Check it out and come back for more information.

Cuban Hero Presents Case of The Five to U.S. Youth

Havana, Cuba, Sept 13.- How were they treated in U.S. jails,? where can we get information on the case of The Five? and what else can be done to obtain their freedom? were some of the questions answered on Friday by Fernando Gonzalez, Hero of the Republic of Cuba, to young U.S. persons.

In the videoconference that connected Cuba with the northern nation, the antiterrorist fighter offered a panorama of the imprisonment suffered by him and the other members of The Five to students and professors of the Los Angeles Trade Technical College, as well as to political activists grouped around this university of public and community nature.
The treatment given by the U.S. media to the legal process and the humanitarian situation of these antiterrorists were some of the topics that awoke more interest during the exchange, which took place from the University of Havana (UH) as part of activities held to mark the 16th anniversary of the unfair incarceration of The Five on September 12.
On behalf of all members of his organization, the President of the Federation of University Students of the UH, Willy Pedroso, thanked these U.S. citizens for the interest shown.
The conversation we had today shows that there’s still a lot of ignorance about the case but also that there’s a lot of interest in knowing more about it. Let’s hope that the suggestion you made of creating an association composed of U.S. universities to spread the truth about The Five can come true, he concluded.(acn).

Russia Demands Release of Cuban Antiterrorists             
       Written by Ana Luisa Brown   

Imagen activa13 de septiembre de 2014, 12:33Moscow, Sep 13 (Prensa Latina) The Russian Foreign Ministry's spokesman, Alexandr Lushévich today called for the release of three Cuban anti-terrorists that since 16 years ago remain in the US prisons after being convicted in unjust trials.

We express full solidarity with the broad international campaign in support of the Cuban anti-terrorist heroes.

We call for the release of the Cuban patriots who are still in prisons in the United States, the spokesperson stressed.

The official representative of the Russian Foreign Affairs Ministry denounced, in his response to media's questions, Washington's hypocrisy on human rights.

The case of the five Cuban antiterrorist heroes as they are called in Havana, is an example, and by no means the only one,of the 'double standard' of the US administration, on human rights and the treatment of the struggle against international terrorism, he added.

Lukashevich recalled that Gerardo Hernandez, Antonio Guerrero and Ramón Labañino were jailed for monitoring extremist groups planning attacks on their country from the United States.

In a note posted on the website of the Foreign Ministry spokesman explained that this work was carried out precisely in the context of addressing international terrorism, and not detrimental to the national security of the United States.

This is demonstrated by the fact that in 1998 gave Washington documents obtained of the illegal activities of anti-Cuban groups in Florida state, he emphasized.

The spokesman deplored that, however,later the US leadership decided to take the enemies road to normalizing relations with Cuba. The Five Cubans were arrested and charged with spying.

On the trial,he commented, that was held in atmosphere of open pressure by part of the reactionary circles, which could not fail to be reflected in sentencing.

The fact that three Cubans on false charges are already serving 16 years in prison is a clear prove of a rigid ideological blindness, which can not escape the US authorities, stressed the official representative of the Foreign Ministry.

Influential US political forces are still prey to phobias of the past and openly promote a policy of 'double standards'. And this is not only to Cuba, concluded the spokesperson of the Foreign Affairs Ministry.

Mexican Congresswoman Supports Release of Cuban Anti-terrorists
       Written by Yoama Ford   

Imagen activa12 de septiembre de 2014, 16:37Mexico, Sep 12 (Prensa Latina) Congresswoman Margarita Licea González, Vice President of the legislative group of friendship Mexico-Cuba, stated today here that they are looking for strategies to support the release of the Cuban anti-terrorist prisoners in United States jails.

The Declaration of the Mexican congresswoman takes place when arriving at 16 years of imprisonment of The Cuban Five accused for alerting their country from terrorist acts by extremists in the state of Florida.

Licea González, member of the parliamentary group of the National Action Party (PAN), regretted the persisting insensitivity in the case after such a long time.

In statements to Prensa Latina, she said the Chamber of Deputies is willing to give its support to speak out on this issue as " it seems to us that the decisions to be taken in this case have been putted off"

"In the Chamber of Deputies, we are going to support a point of agreement, I think that they have been doing so earlier legislatures in the same case, but we are now studying the matter to request to do the final report and contribute to the release of these Cuban prisoners in US prisons," she said.

René González, Gerardo Hernández, Antonio Guerrero, Fernando González and Ramón Labañino were arrested in 1998 and in 2001 they underwent judicial proceedings in the city of Miami, which were denounced as irregular and false.

Fernando and René are in Cuba with their relatives after serving their sentences, but Gerardo, Ramón and Antonio remain in federal prisons, while thousands of voices of the world are raised for their release.

Below are Free The 5 Campaign events worldwide for September 2014 which listed at

Havana, Cuba the X International Colloquium to Free the Cuban Five and against Terrorism, September 11th and 12th

England, Sept. 8-10, 2014: Olga Salanueva in England

URGENT MEETINGS: Protest against UK denial of visa to René González
Emergency meetings to go ahead with Olga Salaneuva

On 27th August Rene Gonzalez was again denied a visa to visit the UK. This decision was taken despite the fact that 29 MPs had invited him to speak at a meeting at the Houses of parliament on September 10th. On 5 September, he suffered a further miscarriage of justice when the British courts failed to overturn the decision.

If you want to help protest, and particularly if you are in England, information is here.

Olga Salanueva, wife of released Miami Five prisoner René González, will speak at emergency meetings on 8-10 September to protest at the British government’s denial of an entry visa for her husband.

René, the first of the Miami Five to be released, was due to speak at meetings in Liverpool and London to mark the 16th anniversary of their arrests. Despite an invitation from 29 British MPs to address a meeting in parliament and by the TUC to address their Congress in Liverpool, the British government has refused three legal appeals to overturn their decision to deny him entry to the country.

Rene is currently in the middle of visits to Portugal and France, both countries having granted him a visa without issue.

Emergency meetings with Olga Salanueva

Monday 8 September, 5.45pm
CSC Fringe meeting, TUC Congress Liverpool
Liverpool ACC, Room 12,
with guest speakers
Olga Salanueva
Esther Armenteros, Cuban Ambassador
Frances O'Grady, TUC General Secretary (invited)
Len McCluskey, Unite General Secretary
Kevin Courtney, NUT Deputy General Secretary
Bernard Regan, CSC National Secretary

Tuesday 9 September, 7.30pm
The Boardroom, Jack Jones House, 2 Churchill Way, Liverpool
Public meeting-All welcome

Wednesday 10 September, 6.30pm
Committee Room 9, House of Commons, London
hosted by Jeremy Corbyn MP
with Olga Salanueva
Baroness Angela Smith
Elizabeth Woodcraft and Sara Chandler - Barristers and Coordinators of International Commission of Inquiry into the Case of the Five
(Please arrive early to allow time to pass through HoC security)

Please come to protest against the British government's denial of Rene's visa and hear about why he needed to go to the US to defend Cuba, his 13 years in a US prison and 20 months on forced parole in Miami, being denied visitation rights from his wife, and the continuing international campaign for freedom and justice for the remaining prisoners.

Despite pro bono work by barristers on the three legal appeals, extensive court costs have been charged to CSC for challenging the British government’s decision.

Anyone able to help with paying these fees can make a donation here.

Washington, DC, Sept. 11, 2014: Evening of Solidarity with the Cuban Five

Date: Thursday, Sept. 11, 2014
Time: 7pm
Location: Casa Rutilio, 102 Park Avenue, Takoma Park, MD

New York, NY, Sept. 12, 2014: Picket

Date: Friday, Sept. 12, 2014
Time: 5pm-7pm
Location: 26 Federal Plaza, New York (Take the 4, 5, or 6 to Brooklyn Bridge-City Hall)

Bring your flags, noisemakers, signs and be ready to chant!

Sponsor: The Popular Education Project to Free the Cuban Five
For more information: 718-601-4751 or

San Francisco, CA, Sept. 12, 2014: Rally & Program featuring Nancy Morejón

A late afternoon street rally calling for freedom for the Cuban Five on the 16th anniversary of their unjust imprisonment will be followed by an evening program featuring he highly esteemed and world-renowned Cuban poet, essayist, critic, editor and cultural worker Nancy Morejón. Morejón will read her poetry about the Cuban Five as well as poetry of Cuban Five hero Antonio Guerrero, and other special selections. There will also be an update on the freedom struggle of the Cuban Five.

Date: Friday, Sept. 12, 2014
Time: Rally 5:30 pm
Location: 24th/Mission St., San Francisco

Time: Program 7:00 pm
Location: 2969 Mission St., SF (near 26th St.)

Sponsor: National Committee to Free the Cuban Five
Endorsers: ANSWER Coalition; Bay Area Latin America Solidarity Coalition; Haiti Action Committee; International Committee
to Free the Angola Three; Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN), Nor. Calif; FNRP/LIBRE Nor. Calif; SOaW-San Francisco; Party for Socialism and Liberation; Task Force on the Americas (MITF); Workers World Party; Women Organized to Resist & Defend (WORD); American Indian Movement - West

For more information or to endorse: 415/821.6545 •

Seattle, WA, Sept. 12, 2014: Five Heroes, Only One Heart - An Evening of Music & Poetry

Date: Friday, Sept. 12, 2014
Time: 7-9 pm
Location: University Temple United Methodist Church, 1415 NE 43rd St., Seattle

Poems received before September 5, 2014 will be included in a new booklet of poems and songs for the 5! All authors will be invited to read their creations at events on September 12 & 13, 2014 taking place in Seattle and Vancouver. We encourage poems to be written in all languages for this international effort! Please email poetry submissions to:

Co-organized by the Seattle-Cuba Friendship Committee & Free the Cuban 5 Committee-Vancouver in partnership with Vancouver Communities in Solidarity with Cuba (VCSC), US Women & Cuba Collaboration & National Committee to Free the Cuban Five-Seattle
For more information: or 206-523-1720 or

Albuquerque, NM, Sept. 12, 2014: Solidarity with the Cuban Five

A forum will feature the Saul Landau film, "Will the real terrorist please stand up?", a presentation on the Cuban Five, and how people can get involved in their freedom fight. It is also Native American prisoner Leonard Peltier's 70th birthday; a cake for him will be presented and picture sent to him. There will also be a talk on the Angola 3 case.

Date: Friday, Sept. 12, 2014
Time: 7:00 pm
Location: 305 Washington Street SE, Suite C, Albuquerque

For more information: (505) 268-2488
Sponsor: ANSWER Coalition and Party for Socialism and Liberation.

Chicago, IL, Sept. 12, 2014: Rally for the Cuban Five

Leafletting and signs along Michigan and Randolph Streets

Date: Friday, Sept. 12, 2014
Time: 4:30-6:30 pm
Location: outside Millennium Park ( to catch the crowd attending the Cuban band Pablo Menendez Mezcla, playing at the Pritzker Pavilion at 6 pm that day)

For more information:, 773-322-3168
Sponsors: Chicago Committee to Free the Cuban 5, ANSWER Chicago, Vets for Peace - Chicago, Chicago Cuba Coalition, Socialist Workers Party

Washington, DC, Sept. 12, 2014: Picket line in front of the White House

Date: Friday, Sept. 12, 2014
Time: 12 noon
Location: Across the street from Lafayette Park

Initiated by the International Committee for the Freedom of the Cuban 5,

Germany, Sept. 12-13, 2014: Rallies and Tabling for the Cuban Five

Friday, September 12: rally in Düsseldorf, near the US Consulate, Berta-von-Suttner-Platz, Düsseldorf - from 11:00 to the evening, including performances, speeches, music and handing-over a petition to Consul General Stephen A. Hubler
Saturday, September 13: rally in Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf from 11:00 to 12:00, at Heinrich-Heine-Denkmal [monument honoring the German poet, having made friends with Karl Marx then] at the Schwanenspiegel; At the same time: in Chemnitz, sister city of Düsseldorf, from 11:00 to 1:00 p.m. at the Karl-Marx-Monument, both events will provide information on the case and participants will wear yellow ribbons and will perform the respective song.
Saturday, September 13, rally and information desk from 11:00 to 3:00 p.m. at the U.S. Embassy in Berlin, at the Brandenburger Tor, see:

For more information on all events:

Prague, Czech Republic, Sept. 12, 2014: Demonstration at the US Embassy

Date: Friday, Sept. 12, 2014
Time: 5 pm
Location: In front of the US Embassy

Sponsors: Czech-Cuban Friendship Society and the Free-The-Five Czech Committee

Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sept. 12, 2014: Demonstration at the US Embassy

Date: Friday, Sept. 12, 2014
Time: 12 noon
Location: In front of the US Embassy, en la Av. Colombia esquina Av. Sarmiento, Palermo.

Washington, DC, Sept. 12, 2014: Cultural event

Time: 6 pm
Location: IMPACT Hub DC 419 7th St NW, Washington, D.C

Reception with poetry and music, update of the case and a 30 minutes new video about the London Commission of Inquiry on the case of the Cuban 5. Wine and cheese.

Sponsor: International Committee for the Freedom of the Cuban 5
For more information: 510-219-0092

Vancouver, BC, CANADA Sept. 13, 2014: Conference

Date: Saturday, Sept. 13, 2014
Time: 2 pm
Location: Mount Pleasant Neighbourhood House, 800 E Broadway, near Fraser St.

Film- Guest Speakers- Discussion- Cultural activities- & more! Conference will be held in English with translation into Spanish available!

Sponsor: Free the Cuban 5 Committee - Vancouver

Washington, DC, Sept. 13, 2014: Commemorate the 16th anniversary of the Cuban 5

Date: Saturday, Sept. 13, 2014
Time: 7 pm
Location: Service Employees International Union (SEIU), 1800 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, DC

Opening of a new exhibit of paintings by Antonio Guerrero “Absolved by Solidarity”

Program will include:

Welcoming by SEIU leaders followed by a panel discussion


Jose Ramon Cabañas, Chief of the Cuban Interests Section in Washington DC.
Yeidckol Polevnsky, former Vice President of the Mexican Senate.
Stephen Kimber, Professor of Journalism at the University of King’s College in Halifax. Author of What Lies Across the Water, the Real Story of the Cuban Five.
Ann Wright, anti-war activist, former United States Army colonel and retired U.S. State Department official.
Piero Gleijeses, professor of United States foreign policy at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University.
Lawrence Wilkerson, Retired United States Army Colonel and former chief of staff to United States Secretary of State Colin Powell

Poetry by local artists

Sponsor: International Committee for the Freedom of the Cuban 5
For more information: 510-219-0092

New Haven, CT, Sept. 13, 2014: ANSWER Forum: Free the Cuban Five!

Date: Saturday, Sept. 13, 2014
Time: 1 pm
Location: Wilson Branch Library, 303 Washington Ave, New Haven, CT

New York, NY, Sept. 20, 2014: Film: Will the Real Terrorist Please Stand Up

Date: Saturday, Sept. 20, 2014
Time: 6pm-8pm
Location: Word Up Community Bookshop / Librería Comunitaria 2113 Amsterdam Avenue @ 165th Street, New York
Suggested donation: $5-$10 (no one will be turned away due to lack of funds)

Help us raise money for the Cuban 5’s commissary fund! The money we raise will be sent to the Cuban 5 so they can have access to food, writing utensils and other basic needs denied them by the prison system.

Sponsor: The Popular Education Project to Free the Cuban Five
For more information: 718-601-4751 or

New York, NY, Sept. 30, 2014: Letter-writing campaign for the Cuban Five

Date: Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014
Time: 7pm
Location: CAGE 83A Hester Street (UPSTAIRS)

The deal, as always, is that you come bringing only yourself (and your friends and comrades), and we provide you with a delicious vegan meal, information about the prisoners as well as all of the letter-writing materials and prisoner-letter-writing info you could ever want to use in one evening. In return, you write a thoughtful letter to a political prisoner or prisoner of war of your choosing or, better yet, keep up a long-term correspondence. We’ll also provide some brief updates and pass around birthday cards for the PP/POWs whose birthdays fall in the next two weeks. Update on the case of the Cuban Five from Benjamin Ramos, The Popular Education Project to Free the Cuban 5.

Sponsor: The Popular Education Project to Free the Cuban Five
For more information: 718-601-4751 or

New York, NY, Oct. 11, 2014: Meeting on Political Prisoners

Date: Saturday, Oct. 11, 2014
Time: 1pm
Location: Freedom Hall, 113 West 128th St. (between Malcolm X/Lenox & Adam Clayton Powell Blvds.)

Radical Women and Freedom Hall will be hosting a community meeting on Political Prisoners: Nestora Salgado, The Cuban Five, and other political prisoners. There will be lunch at 1pm and the program begins at 1:30pm.

Sponsor: The Popular Education Project to Free the Cuban Five
For more information: 718-601-4751 or


International Committee for the Freedom 

of the Cuban 5


Third "5 Days for the Cuban 5" in 

Washington D.C. June 4 -11, 2014


The International Committee for the Freedom of the Cuban 5 

Announces Actions in Solidarity with the Five 

in Washington D.C.  



Planning has already begun on the 3rd consecutive "5 Days for the Cuban 5" that are to take place in the U.S. Capital June 4 -11.  As was the case in the previous 2 years, there will be a rally in front of the White House. This year that protest will take place on June 7 at 1 pm to demand that President Obama end this injustice, now in its 16th year.  Other activities will include a two day conference with workshops on the case of the Five and U.S. Cuba relations. There will also be a media push to major networks, cultural events, and two days of lobbying efforts in Congress.


Personalities, parliamentarians and activists have already started confirming that they will be participating in the Third "5 Days for the Cuban 5".


Ways in which you can get involved:

  • Travel to Washington D.C. to participate in the 5 days of activities
  • Recruit people from your cities to travel to Washington D.C.
  • Participate in the rally in front of the White House on June 7
  • Do volunteer work during the 5 days
  • Help to bring Parliamentarians from your respective countries
  • Make a DONATION - If you wish to send a wire transfer write to and we will send you the information you need. 


We call on the entire movement in solidarity with the Cuban people and the Cuban 5 in the United States and around the world to join the Third "5 Days for the Cuban 5" in Washington  D.C. 





  Two other events of great importance coming up this year:


 The International Commission of Inquiry into the Case of the Five will take place in London March 7 - 8, 2014


The International Commission of Inquiry in London will hear key witnesses from Cuba and other countries about the case of the Cuban 5. René Gonzalez, the only member of the Cuban 5 who has served his entire sentence and is free in Cuba, will attend the London event.


International personalities such as Pulitzer Prize winning author Alice Walker, actors Martin Sheen and Emma Thompson are supporting this important international effort. 


The Commission will hear testimonies from approximately 20 key witnesses, including the defense lawyer of the Five, Martin Garbus, representatives from Amnesty International and family members of the Cuban 5 including Olga Salanueva and Elizabeth Palmeiro.


For more information on how to attend or endorse, visit:



III World Meeting  of Solidarity with Cuba 

October 27 - 31, 2014 in Havana, Cuba


The Cuban Institute of Friendship with the Peoples (ICAP) and the Cuban Chapter in Defense of Humanity are calling friends of Cuba and the world to participate in this important solidarity event. For more information go to 


To learn more about the Cuban 5 visit: 

Follow us in twitter and facebook 

MAKE A DONATION  to support the future projects of the International Committee


logoInternational Committee for the  

Freedom of the Cuban 5   






Dear Friends,

Here are three letters from the Cuban 5 to their supporters around the world for  Christmas and the approaching New Year.  Below there is a moving video from their families in Havana.      


Due to the fact that since December 21 Victorville Penitentiary is once again in one of its frequent lock downs, Gerardo Hernandez was unable to send out a solidarity message.    


Message from Antonio Guerrero


Dear friends

It was twelve years ago this December when we received from a Miami Judge our long, brutal and unjust sentences.

I can remember when I first came to the penitentiary in Florence, Colorado, in the middle of a severe winter in 2002. I arrived there carrying a life sentences on my shoulders and soon learned that some inmates called that prison "a cemetery of living men". Many of the prisoners that I met there were designated to either die in that penitentiary or in some other prison of the federal system. Their chances in a Federal Court of appeals to get a release date are zero and many of these men had already served long period of time. Violence was a daily part of the routine inside the walls of Florence USP and it was really hard just to find somebody there who was a quiet peaceful person. Almost everyone there had a record of violent acts committed inside or outside the prison walls. To make it all even worse an abundance of the prisoners were suffering from some type of mental illness.

I still remember some of my conversations with the most veteran prisoners in the penitentiary who told me that when you reach 15 years of time you cross a line when "prison is prison". They explained that is the time when physical and psychological problems start to appear.

We now find ourselves in the 16th year of unjust incarceration and are fortunate that we have no symptoms of disorientation or depression. On the contrary, each day in prison we are more positive and creative; we are more serene and supremely optimistic.

I am taking a risk to say it, but it is my sense that never has any prisoner received as many letters as we, the Cuban 5, have, from all around the world during our long imprisonment. It has been an endless flow of letters full of friendship and love. These messages of solidarity have never stopped coming since people learned of our situation back in 2001. This have made the difference and we know that this stream of support and love will not stop until our many friends know that we have all arrived safely back home.

The hard life that one experiences in prison demonstrates to me that an innocent man, with pure principles, loved by many people will never lose his mind. He will never let his integrity and moral be compromised or broken, and this remains true even if that person is placed in the most isolated cell.

As Jose Marti said: "A just principle from the bottom of a cave is stronger than an army."

To you, our eternal gratitude for your immense and constant support that makes us continue to be resistant and makes us taste our inevitable freedom each day.  


Happy New Year 2014!

We wish you health, happiness and success in your goals.

Five big embraces




Under the rain of time,

between our two wounds,

where light passes through

tie a yellow ribbon.


On the balcony of your dreams,

on the tree on the corner,

on your door that is my door

tie a yellow ribbon.


For the world to see

like a flower extended

to the tip of a star

tie a yellow ribbon.


Although I know how much you love me,

how much your life is my life;

although I know you await me

tie a yellow ribbon.




Antonio Guerrero Rodríguez

FCI Marianna, Florida
December 24, 2013


Message from Ramón Labañino


Dear sisters and brothers:


This year 2013 is reaching an end and we want to express our gratitude and love to every one of you.

Thanks so much for your solidarity and support!

Best wishes!

Peace, love, solidarity and freedom!

Happy 2014!

Ramón Labañino  

FCI Ashland, Kentucky

December 21, 2013  


Message from Fernando Gonzalez 


Dear Friends,


We have arrived at the end of another year. It has been a period of enormous effort and significant results in the fight for our liberation.


This year that is ending leaves us with the satisfaction of the definitive return of René to the homeland and the encouragement of what his contribution means to the campaign for the release of the Five.


There have been several moments that have marked milestones during this year on the work of the solidarity with our cause. Let us mention for example, without diminishing the significance of everyone's efforts, the Second Five days for the Cuban Five held in the United States capital, the 9th Colloquium in Holguin, the legal victory obtained when a judge ordered the U.S. Government to make public information about journalists who received payments, the publication of the book "What Lies Across the Water, the true story of the Cuban Five" and the tour of its author, Stephen Kimber, in several North American cities. We cannot fail to mention the activities in all parts of the world to commemorate the fifteenth anniversary of our unfair arrests. These are just a few of the significant moments of your work this year. These efforts include many countries of the world in each of the continents.


For all of this outstanding work we are deeply grateful. The case of Cubans 5 imprisoned in the United States is now public knowledge and has penetrated the circles of power thanks to the work of you. Pressure on these circles is thanks to the solidarity of hundreds of thousands of friends around the world.

Let us welcome the New Year with renewed enthusiasm, with the same spirit of struggle and the same confidence in the triumph of the truth. We humbly ask you to give your full support to the convening of the International Commission of Inquiry in the case of the Cuban Five that will take place in London England at the beginning of March. Our gratitude for the work of all those European committees involved in the organizing of this event.

Let us also give our full support to the activities during the month of June for the "Third 5 Days for the Cuban Five" in Washington, D.C., organized by the International Committee for the Freedom of the Cuban 5. We welcome enthusiastically the initiatives of the National Committee to Free the Cuban Five in the United States and of all the committees which operate on our behalf in almost all countries of the world.

To all of you in any part of the universe where you are building solidarity through your activism, accept our infinite gratitude for another year of efforts and achievements in the fight for our liberation.

To all a Happy New Year. Let 2014 be another year of victories and advances in the struggle.

Happy  2014!

Fernando González Llort.

FCI Safford, Arizona

December 21, 2013      


For more information about the Cuban 5 visit:

To support the projects of the International Committee DONATE



a review by law student Pete-Semaj McKnight for Mona Law Society's publication called "Precedent"



The debating teams and executive members of the Mona Law Society pose for a picture with Cuban Ambassador Bernardo Guanche Hernandez.


Human rights are inalienable, immutable and universal principles that are incidents of an individual’s humanity”

These were the overarching themes pervading Lecture Theatre Room 2 during the Cuban Five debate that was held on October 3, 2013 at the University of West Indies Law Faculty.

The Cuban Five are five Cuban Intelligence Officers said to be unfairly imprisoned in the United States. They were convicted of conspiracy to commit espionage, conspiracy to commit murder acting as an agent of the foreign government and related charges. The men, who were imprisoned in the late 1990’s, contended that their actions were not directed to the U.S government. Their defense was that they were there on a government mission in Miami, to monitor a terrorist based group, in order to prevent them from continuing their attacks on Cuba. The men also argued that their right to a fair trial had been infringed due to the lack of evidence the US had against them as well as the inevitable bias that jury members would have against them since they resided in a florida community with strong anti-cuba sentiments. Even the United Nations Commission on Human Rights noted that “the trial did not take place in a climate of objectivity and impartiality that is required in order to conform to the standards of a fair trial.”

It was an evening poised with fluidity, expression, and cultural integration with our Cuban neighbors. The debate was scheduled to begin at 5:30pm, and so it did with a brilliant rendition of Redemption Song by Jheavaughn Leon, reiterating the concept of freedom while awaiting the arrival of the Cuban Ambassador Senor Bernardo Guanche Hernandez. Ms. Rowana Kay Campbell the Legal Educations Officer, with her Committee, orchestrated the entire event and opened the proceedings. The Moot presented before us was: "Be it resolved that the Cuban Five were unjustly and unfairly prosecuted and convicted in the United States of America?"


This daunting task was accepted by Yanique Wilson and Jared Wright, first and second year students respectively, who comprised the proposing team. The opposing team members were third years Jameila Simpson and Jermaine Campbell. Dr. Biholar, currently Lecturer of International Human Rights Law, and Mr. Osvaldo Cardenas were members of the reviewing panel. The procedures were clearly instructed, setting the stage for an entertaining debate.

The proposition elucidated points stating that the United States government was abrogating components of Public International Law, such as, Use of Force, State Responsibility, State Immunity and the Law of Treaties . Inevitably they identified that Article 26 of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties was not being fulfilled because the US government failed to observe the right to a fair trial outlined in Article 10 in the Universal Declarations of Human rights. They then proceeded to identify the impropriety and unfair treatment the U.S government subjected the Cuban Five to, reaffirming that it was unconstitutional. Finally they purported that it should have been dealt with as an international matter, instead of a domestic one. Their counterparts, the opposition, argued the position of the U.S. prosecutors with vigor and passion stating that the US government fairly tried and prosecuted the Cuban five. This was substantiated by stating the intended purpose for each indictment, such as it would prevent terrorism and that it was beyond a reasonable doubt that the Cuban Five were prima facie guilty. After the dust settled, the reviewing panel concluded in the propositions favor, awarding them the victor of the debate. Dr. Biholar commented that their argument was more detailed, organized and deeply rooted in legal principles.

Albeit the opposition did a valiant job to debunk in the minds of especially the Cuban delegates that this was just and fair under the law.  Each speaker brought to the fore their own, individuality, but it was the first Speaker of the proposition Ms .Wilson who captivated the audience. She eloquently argued her points, earning her several commendations. Positive remarks on the debate were given by Senor Osvaldo Cardenas President of the Cuban Jamaican Association.However, it was ultimately the Cuban Ambassador who had the final word. He addressed the patrons, thanked everyone that attended, commended the proposition and gave greater incite to the case. There was then a light reception.

In hindsight the Cuban Five debate was excellently executed and a huge a success for the Mona Law Society and the entire law faculty.




(September 12, 2013)

Today marks the 15th  anniversary of the unjust arrest and incarceration of our brave Cuban brothers Ramon, Antonio, Fernando, Gerardo and Rene. It is no comfort to us that Fernando will be released in February next year because he should not have been imprisoned in the first place. The fact that Rene is home in the arms of his family and the Cuban people instead of completing a 3-year parole, which further compounded the injustice against him, is an indication of the strength of the global solidarity movement for the freedom of the 5 Cuban Heroes. It proves the mantra of the global progressive movement that the people united can never be defeated or as we say in Spanish “El pueblo unido jamas sera vencido.” It encourages us to continue to fight for the freedom of the remaining 4 and to continue to demand that all 5 be exonerated of the charges against them.

This campaign of yellow ribbons must really warm the heart Ramon, Antonio, Fernando and Gerardo, to think that after so many years the energy of the struggle for their freedom has not waned but grows stronger and more creative day by day.

We’d like to take this opportunity to announce that on October 3, UWI law students will hold a debate on the case of the 5 heroes. We are heartened by the positive response of the Mona Law Society from the moment we approached them with the idea and we look forward to this idea finally coming to fruition. So we are asking you to note the date because we would like a good turnout to the event.

In closing we would like to welcome to the new Cuban ambassador, His Excellency Bernardo Guanche Hernandez and his family. We wish him a successful tour of duty. We’d like to assure him that he can count on our continued solidarity and support.



We who are gathered here today  as part of the “Five Days for the Five” global campaign, in solidarity with the Five Cuban Heroes, four of whom are still unjustly incarcerated in the United States, demand  that President Obama act now to free these five anti-terrorists of all charges and return Gerardo Hernández, Ramón Labañino, Antonio Guerrero and Fernando González to their homeland. We further call on President Obama to immediately terminate the criminal blockade against Cuba.


Pictures of the Free the Five march in Washington DC in 2013
Press Conference in Washington at the beginning of Five Days for The Five in 2013

YouTube Video




      What do Marcus Garvey and the Cuban Five have in common?


      They were jailed on spurious charges because of their noble stand for just causes.


      Marcus Garvey struggled to restore the dignity and respect of the black race. He was imprisoned for mail fraud to the tune of US$25 in June 1923, and after spending two years and nine months in an Atlanta Federal Penitentiary, was deported from New Orleans, Louisiana to Jamaica on a ship. The Barack Obama-led US administration has flatly rejected a request for a presidential pardon for Jamaica's national hero, the Right Honourable Marcus Mosiah Garvey. Just think, the efforts of Marcus Garvey helped to create the possibility for Barack to become President of the United States at this juncture in history. How will history view Barack Obama?


      The Cuban Five risked their lives to expose terrorist plots that would have wantonly massacred human lives and threatened the sovereignty of Cuba. Instead of congratulating them for their efforts which also spared American lives, the American authorities arrested Gerardo Hernandez, Antonio Guerrero, Ramón Labañino, Fernando González and *René González on false charges and imprisoned them without a fair trial. President Obama can use his executive powers to free these men but he has not moved a muscle to sign such an order.








      Who are the Cuban Five?


      The Cuban Five are five Cuban men who are unjustly imprisoned in the United States after being arrested by the FBI on Sept. 12, 1998 and convicted in U.S. federal court in Miami in 2001, in a political prosecution by the U.S. government.

      They are Gerardo Hernández, Ramón Labañino, Antonio Guerrero, Fernando González and René González.*

      The Five were falsely accused by the U.S. government of committing espionage conspiracy against the United States, and other related charges.

      The Five’s actions were never directed at the U.S. government. They never engaged in nor planned any conspiracy against the government.

      As the Cuban Five pointed out in their defense, they were on a mission in Miami, beginning in 1990, to monitor the actions of Miami-based terrorist groups, in order to prevent those groups from carrying out attacks on their country of Cuba.

      They never harmed anyone nor ever possessed nor used any weapons on their mission. Their objective was simply protecting people from terrorism.


      For more than 40 years, anti-Cuba terrorist organizations based in Miami have engaged in hundreds of terrorist activities against Cuba, and against anyone who advocates a normalization of relations between the U.S. and Cuba. A total of 3,478 Cubans have died as a result of terrorist violence, and 2,099 have been injured.

      Avowedly violent organizations like Comandos F-4, Brothers to the Rescue, Cuban American National Foundation’s armed wing, and individuals like Luis Posada Carriles, have operated with complete impunity from within the United States to attack Cuba—with the knowledge and support of the FBI and CIA.

      The U.S. government refused to act to arrest or prosecute well-known, notorious terrorists in Miami, despite overwhelming evidence of their crimes.

      The Cuban Five infiltrated the terrorist organizations in Miami to inform Cuba of imminent attack and to thwart the terrorists’ plots.

      The aim of such a clandestine operation by the Cuban Five—at great personal risk—was to prevent criminal acts, and thus protect the lives of Cubans and other people.

      But instead of arresting the terrorists, the FBI arrested the Cuban Five ANTI-terrorists on September 12, 1998. The Five were illegally held in solitary confinement for 17 months in Miami prison. The seven-month trial began in November 2000, and at the time of the trial was the longest trial in the United States.

      With the trial based in Miami, a virtual witch-hunt atmosphere existed, in which defendants identified as supportive of Cuba could not hope to receive an impartial trial. Defense attorneys’ motions for a change of venue were denied several times by Judge Joan Lenard.

      The Cuban Five were convicted June 8, 2001 and sentenced to four life terms and 75 years in December, 2001.

      A major victory in appeals, then a reversal

      On August 9, 2005, after seven years of unjust imprisonment, the Cuban Five won an unprecedented victory on appeal. In a unanimous 93-page decision, a three-judge panel of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned the convictions of the Cuban Five and ordered a new trial. The court called their prosecution “a perfect storm” of pervasive community prejudice, government misconduct and extensive negative publicity before and during the trial.

      However, the Bush administration appealed, and exactly one year after the favorable ruling granting the Five a new trial, the full panel of the 11th Circuit Court ruled to reverse their victory. Their convictions were reinstated, although later court decisions reduced the sentences of three of the Five, Fernando González, Ramón Labañino and Antonio Guerrero, in October and December 2009.

      * (René González was released on Oct. 7, 2011 after completing his sentence, but the court, in a punitive measure, is denying him the right to return to Cuba to his family, and instead requiring him to serve a 3-year probation sentence in the United States).

      Public support for their freedom is critical

      This case is a political case and the Cuban Five are political prisoners.

      Their freedom will depend not only on the arduous work of the defense team but just as importantly, on the public support that can be organized. Over 350 committees have been established in the United States and around the world, demanding immediate freedom for Gerardo, Ramón, Antonio, Fernando and René.

      Important declarations have been made by hundreds of parliamentarians in Britain, Italy, and the European and Latin American Parliaments. The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detentions, composed of five judges, ruled in May 2005 that there were irregularities in the Five’s trial and arrest, effectively denying them a fair trial. The Working Group — in its only decision regarding a trial in the United States — calls on the U.S. government to remedy this injustice.

      In the United States, the National Committee to Free the Cuban Five is working very hard to build broad support for these anti-terrorist heroes, with forums and video showings, media and publicity work, marches, petitions and other publicity.

      The year 2012 will be critical for the struggle to win freedom for the Cuban Five. Call or write us! Find out how you can do your part to win justice for five men who dedicated their lives to save others.

      Learn more:

      Home  |  News Archives  |  Legal Front  |  Downloads  |  Audio  |  Video  |  Contact Us  |  Store/Donat





      Extradite CIA AssasSin Luis Posada Carriles

      Wanted for terrorism in Venezuela, Cuba, and Central America;
      Living in Miami, protected by the U.S. Government

      Luis Posada Carriles is the most notorious of the many Miami-based terrorists who the Cuban Five were monitoring and preventing from carrying out further acts of terrorism against the people of Cuba and others around the world. His most notorious crime was masterminding the mid-air explosion of Cubana Flight 455 in 1976, killing all 73 people on board. He is wanted in Venezuela on 73 counts of murder, and the U.S. government has been studiously ignoring the Venezuelan government's extradition request.



      YouTube Video

      YouTube Video


      YouTube Video


      YouTube Video


      Gerardo Hernández • René González • Antonio Guerrero • Ramon Labañino • Fernando González
      Free the Cuban Five Heroes Unjustly Held in U.S. Prisons!