Monday, May 30, 2011

Cuban exile in Madrid honors dissident Pedro Luis Boitel

"Boitel be in the pantheon to which they are the right people," said Fernando Gril today, author of the biography of the dissident Pedro Luis Boitel (1931-1972). The poet, a student leader and central figure of dissent on the island was declared hunger strike on April 3, 1972 and died 53 days later, on 25 May.

He was buried in an unmarked grave in the Colón Cemetery in Havana. And so, an unmarked grave, is titled the biography that the Argentine Fernando Gril has written and presented today at the Circulo de Bellas Artes in Madrid during the tribute act, in which writers participated Carlos Alberto Montaner and Zoe Valdés, human rights activist Janisset Rivero and a group of former political exiles in Spain.

Montaner Boitel met in the prison of La Cabaña. It was at that time the most popular student leader of Cuba. Cuban writer has stressed today that the political history of Cuba is, somehow, the story of their prisoners: "You can make the history of the Cuban revolution from a political prisoner" because there are periods in recent history in which there were more than 100,000 political prisoners.

Montaner Boitel was recalled that one of the first political prisoners killed in the island by a hunger strike beginning of a chain of 13 people who have come to the most recent, Orlando Zapata: "The great injustice and great sacrifices become emotional equity in our society. " And what does an Argentine left and Gril writing a book like this? Fernando Gril (Buenos Aires, 1979) has stated that he had the typical topical and ideas "that all young people have about Cuba: that the revolution had been good for Cuban society, which had education and health for all, but knew nothing of political prisoners or prison, or committees.

" Thanks to a fellow student in Madrid, the Mexican Jose Luis Garza, contacted human rights groups and began to engage with the situation of political prisoners in Cuba. "Many people spoke of Boitel dissent and when I tried to read a biography of him I discovered that there was no" said the author.

"The tomb of Boitel has no name, but his name was very present in the hearts of many. Write his biography was an act of justice," said the Argentine. Boitel opposed the government of Fulgencio Batista in the fifties, and therefore was forced into exile in Venezuela. After the Castro returned to Cuba, but, disappointed by the paths of political events, he founded a clandestine organization.

In 1961 he was arrested and charged with conspiracy against the state and sentenced to 10 years in prison, but already in jail, the sentence extended new positions until he decided to declare a hunger strike. "In 1972, when Boitel died, many were children who knew nothing about prisons," said Romero Janisset.

"Boitel represents all those men who chose to die for their dignity." The human rights activist dedicated to the express words politicians attending the event, including his own brother: "Boitel is becoming one of Cuba's political prisoners." Zoé Valdés began his speech by the "political sympathies" to Grill: "Until now you were the center-left but from now you will be considered right or extreme right, which is how we are seen to those who denounce the situation in Cuba.

" Valdés emphasized that Boitel was a rebel against Batista and Castro and was fully aware of its end because "I knew I would live through his own death." "The drama is the drama Boitel of us all," said the Cuban writer, who thanked books like this and the need for these can come to Cuba: "Disclosure of reality versus revolution, freedom and life, against homeland death.

" Boitel figures and Zapata, who died in 2010 after 83 days on hunger strike on 15 May this year would have turned 44 years and who spends Gril second epilogue of his book, "have become a rallying cry resistance within Cuba "said Rivero. The book is published by the Association of Ibero-American for Freedom (AIL), a nonprofit organization aimed at promoting democracy and human rights in Latin America.

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