Thursday, February 16, 2012

Terrorist Posada Runs Free While Cuban Five Heroes Fight for Freedom

Terrorist Posada runs free while Cuban Five heroes fight on for freedom

By Cheryl LaBash
Published Feb 15, 2012 9:36 PM

On Jan. 19, a request for the extradition of Luis Posada Carriles from the United States was filed in the Panamanian courts, according to Posada and four co-conspirators were convicted of the attempted assassination of the then-Cuban president, Fidel Castro, at the 2000 Ibero-American Summit in Panama. Their plot to bomb the crowded university venue with 200 pounds of explosives was thwarted, saving many lives.

Posada Carriles and his gang were convicted and sent to prison for surprisingly short terms — eight years for the ringleader. Then in 2004, shortly before leaving Panama for Miami where she now lives, outgoing Panamanian president, Mireya Moscoso, swung the jail doors open for them. Now, they are all in Miami, enjoying life. Moscoso has been seen with Posada and says she would do a pardon for them again!

Panamanian courts overturned all of the pardons in 2008, charging that Moscoso overstepped her constitutional authority. The convictions and prison terms were reinstated. Although the extradition filing is a step forward, the Panamanian Supreme Court must yet rule and then order the Foreign Ministry to send the request to the U.S. In a process that has already taken years, it is unknown when these last steps will be completed.

The U.S. has refused to answer an extradition request for Posada Carriles from Venezuela for the 1976 midair bombing of Cubana Flight 455, killing all 73 people aboard. Nor has the U.S. complied with the Montreal Treaty, which mandates that anyone accused of such an act be extradited or judged in the country of residence.

In 2011, an El Paso, Texas, jury acquitted Posada Carriles of immigration charges. He has yet to stand trial on his real crimes and acts of terror. reported that new plans hatched by Posada Carriles to attack the Havana Book Fair and the new oil drilling platform in Cuban waters were uncovered.

The Cuban Five — Gerardo Hernández, Ramón Labañino, Fernando González, Antonio Guerrero and René González — came to the U.S. as undercover Cuban State Security agents to monitor such plans organized from U.S. territory. They are in their 14th year of unjust imprisonment. René González, although formally released from prison, is not permitted to return to Cuba for three additional years. In a doubly cruel blow, his beloved partner, Olga Salanueva, is still denied a U.S. visa to join him. Gerardo Hernández is serving two life terms plus 15 years. Adriana Pérez, his partner, is also denied a U.S. visa to visit her spouse.

The global outcry against this injustice is growing. Help break the silence around this case in the U.S. For more information, ideas and a link to Danny Glover’s new message about the Cuban Five, go to n
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