The Guardian 7 September, 2005

Cuban Five: Voices for justice

Another Nobel Prize winner, Portuguese writer José Saramago, added his signature to an Open Letter to the US Attorney General, which more than 1500 artists, scientists, journalists and political and social activists from all over the world have signed, demanding the immediate release of the five Cuban anti-terrorist fighters imprisoned in the United States in spite of the annulment of the Miami trial that convicted and sentenced them.

The document has received considerable coverage internationally, including in US newspapers such as the Los Angeles Times, San Jose Mercury News, Houston Chronicle, El Diario-La Prensa, and Voz de las Américas, as well as the Univisión television network, highlighting support for the letter from prestigious intellectuals around the world.

Excerpts from the letter have been published or broadcast in the Argentine dailies Página 12 and Clarín; Chile’s Crónica Digital; Venezuela’s El Tiempo and Venezolana de Televisión; the UK’s BBC; and Mexico’s El Universal.

In the United States, academic and social activist Angela Davis signed the letter a few hours before it was publicised. Her signature has great symbolic value, given that three decades ago she suffered the same types of humiliation as the Five are undergoing in US prisons. A few months ago in Berlin, Davis stated that "fighting for the freedom of the Five is fighting against terrorism in the world."

As the document’s existence becomes known, other intellectuals have added their voices. These include well-known Brazilian filmmaker Walter Salles, director of Motorcycle Diaries; popular Puerto Rican singer Andy Montañez; dancer and cultural advocate Julie Belafonte of the United States, and outstanding Argentine novelist Luisa Valenzuela.


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