Dear Sisters and Brothers,
Your effort to be here today is an encouraging sign about the growth of our movement and is a statement in itself that justice in the case of the Cuban 5 is getting closer. In the beginning of our incarceration, when we were being held in isolation in Miami in 1998, no one knew about our case or even knew that we existed at all. How far we have come! There are now committees in support of the Cuban 5 in many countries and dozens of US consulates around the globe now have to endure regular protests at their doors calling for our freedom. There was a time when the main stream media kept our case completely buried in silence but even that is beginning to change and we can thank you for being creative and persistent in finding ways to get our case into the public eye.
Sixteen years is a long time but you are a movement that just won’t go away. I cannot reiterate enough the importance of you once again holding activities in the US capital calling for our freedom. While many different voices are advocating today for a change in US-Cuba relations, this is the place to be. This is the place to keep telling the truth about the Cuban Five. This is the place to let US authorities know that it’s about time to correct the grave travesty of justice that our case represents.
In retrospect we have made great gains in the past year. The return of Fernando will only boost the effectiveness of our struggle. Along with Rene they can help us visualize the day when we are all home with our families and the Cuban people who I can say with pride have stood strong with us over all this time.
On behalf of the Five I want to thank you all for your continued dedication to our cause and especially I would like to thank the Service Employees International Union for providing their hall for you to use, showing once again the important role that organized labor has in the solidarity movement calling for our freedom.
On this 16th anniversary of our imprisonment you can count on the three of us who remain in prison to keep resisting. You can also count on Rene and Fernando to keep going forward, leading our struggle for justice. And we know we can count on each of you, sisters and brothers, with all your efforts to make our dream come true. Our dream of going one day back to Cuba, to our families and our people. We know it is coming.
Thank you very much!
Gerardo Hernández Nordelo
United States Penitentiary Victorville
California. September 2014.