Final Declaration of the Second National Conference of the Somos+ Movement – Havana, Cuba, 13 September 2015
We find it unacceptable and offensive that the police tried to thwart this meeting. As distinguished, responsible, Cuban adults, who have not broken the law or caused anyone harm, we demand respect for our organization, movement, and freedom of expression. Especially at a time when the government has recently made amends with its “historic enemy,” it is inconceivable that its citizens are still persecuted for thinking and speaking honestly.
We are happy to hear the news of the humanitarian release of 3,500 prisoners. However, we think that those who were deprived of their freedom for political reasons should be at the top of the list. This is the case of Danilo Maldonado, also known as El Sexto (The Sixth).
We welcome Pope Francis. We are honored by his visit and we hope that his blessings pave the way to peace, harmony, and a long overdue national dialogue about the present and future of this country.
We support the citizen’s initiative for the proposal of a New Electoral Law, which various civil society organizations are also pushing for. This proposal will allow Cubans to directly participate in the presidential elections and in a plurality of political options, as this is the only guarantee of stability, reconciliation, and progress.
We express our complete solidarity and support to our dearly beloved Cuban artist Juan Carlos Cremata, who has recently fallen victim to personal attack and censorship of his work by a biased institution that does not legitimately represent the artists and much less the true spirit of art.
We’d like to congratulate the international affiliates of our movement for their efforts in the coming together of this wonderful project. We thank them for their constant support and send them our best wishes from Cuba. Moreover, we are convinced that no matter what corner of the world we are in, we are Cubans above all else and we share the same rights and responsibilities before our homeland.
We are committed to moving forward, rightfully, waving the flags that have defined us from the start. Respect, constant effort, commitment to the truth, thoughtful initiatives, love, and faithfulness to democratic principles as indispensable foundations of the future that together we will build.
Translated by the Spanish 360 class at Dickinson College
13 September 2015