Granma International
July 29, 2004

Cubans protest in Miami against Bush’s measures

MIAMI—Cubans resident in the United States opposed to the recent restrictions brought in by the U.S. government carried out a peaceful protest in Miami last Saturday because they consider the measures to be “anti-family,” Notimex reported.

Brandishing signs and both Cuban and U.S. flags, some 800 demonstrators gathered outside the office of Congressman Lincoln Díaz-Balart, one of the legislators who supported the restrictive measures in the U.S. Congress.

“These measures divide those who came during the 1960s, given that they don’t have family in Cuba, and those who came later,” Max Lesnick, the leader of Alianza Martiana, one of the participating groups, told Notimex.

The demonstrators, convened by the Association of Christian Mothers in Defense of the Family, announced that next week, they would be protesting outside the office of Congresswoman Ileana Ross-Lehtinen, of Cuban origin, who also supported the measures.

“Bush, don’t divide the Cuban family,” and “Bush, nobody plays with the Cuban family,” read some of the posters carried by the demonstrators.

Silvia Wilhelm, of the Association of Christian Mothers in Defense of the Family, said that they were opposed to the measures because they are “anti-family, anti-American, and cruel; they separate Cubans and block the reconciliation of our people.”

Wilhelm commented that legislators should be aware of the fact that the new restrictions “continue to polarize our community. There is outrage and pain, and we should be listened to.” President Bush’s measures limit visits to once every three years for a maximum of 14 days and remittances to $1,200 per year, only to immediate family members.