Cuban dissident Guillermo Farinas is cautioning the European Union to not be fooled by the country's Communist government.
Cuba denied Farinas a visa to travel to France last week, preventing him from receiving the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Conscience.
Farinas expressed his hope that the EU would not be fooled by the deception of “a cruel and savage Communist regime,” as he spoke in a recently recorded message.
Cuba is at a crucial historical moment, he said, and the world must be attentive to the continual protests expressing the frustration people feel over the government’s excessive power. “God forbid an unnecessary civil war take place among Cubans because of the refusal to accept that the socialism of the State has failed as a political model,” he said, adding that the country must peacefully transition to democracy.
Farinas concluded his speech by reaffirming his faith in God and his decision, together with his fellow dissidents, to banish from his heart “all bitterness towards my political adversaries.”
“Lord willing Cuba will soon achieve reconciliation between all and be blessed with democracy,” he added.
Continuing harassment in Cuba
Even as the EU symbolically presented Farinas with his award, the leader of the Christian Liberation Movement in Cuba, Oswaldo Paya Sardinas, was speaking out against the harassment and abuse of prisoner of conscience Jose Daniel Ferrer by the Communist government.
Paya said Ferrer is imprisoned at the Aguadores Penitentiary and is kept in solitary confinement without water.
“I denounce this cowardly abuse and provocation that is simply a stunt being carried out by the Government in order to create the conditions for justifying his unjust imprisonment,” he concluded.