EFE, via 14ymedio, Miami, 3 August 2021 — U.S. Senators from both parties approved on Monday the naming of the Washington street in front of the Cuban Embassy in honor of the late Cuban opposition leader Oswaldo Payá (1952-2012).
Cuban-American Senator Marco Rubio said yesterday that the change pays “a tribute to the life and legacy of one of the island’s most important civic leaders who paid the ultimate price in defense of the democratic future.”
For Rosa María Payá, daughter of the deceased dissident, Oswaldo Payá Way will be “a permanent reminder of the urgency of stopping the regime’s impunity.”
“My father’s legacy lives on in the struggle for freedom and the rights of the Cuban people,” the activist told EFE when the project was presented.
The approval comes in the midst of the protests that have erupted in Cuba since July 11 against the government of Miguel Díaz-Canel and which have been echoed in various demonstrations of support around the world, especially in Miami and Washington.
“Following the historic protests led by Cuban Americans in front of the regime’s embassy in our nation’s capital last Monday, another symbol of the tenacity of the Cuban people in their quest for freedom will be etched for eternity,” Rubio added.
Payá founded the Christian Liberation Movement (MLC) in 1988 to promote democracy and civil liberties through peaceful resistance.
A decade later, the organization created the Varela Project, which sought to advance democratic reforms under a provision of the Cuban Constitution that allowed the public to introduce bills.
Changing the name of the street “is a small but significant step that will force all those who visit or write to the embassy to remember not only Payá, but all those who have challenged the cruelty and oppression of the Cuban communist government.”
Payá’s family has maintained that the car crash in which the opposition leader and dissident Harold Cepero died on July 22, 2012 was caused by agents of the Castro regime.
Payá and Cepero were traveling in a car that went off the road. The car was driven by the young Spanish conservative politician Ángel Carromero, who was sentenced to prison in Cuba for voluntary manslaughter, but was repatriated to serve his sentence in Spain, where he was released within a few days.
In 2012, the U.S. Senate passed a resolution honoring the life of the Cuban opposition leader and calling for an impartial investigation into his death.
Translated by: Hombre de Paz
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