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Cablegate: After Action: Day of Solidarity with the Cuban

VZCZCXYZ0000
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHBM #0404 1440918
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 230918Z MAY 08
FM AMEMBASSY BUCHAREST
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 8293
INFO RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
RHEHAAA/THE WHITE HOUSE WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY

UNCLAS BUCHAREST 000404

SIPDIS

STATE FOR WHA/CCA, EUR/PD AND EUR/NCE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KDEM PHUM PREL KPAO SOCI CU RO
SUBJECT: AFTER ACTION: DAY OF SOLIDARITY WITH THE CUBAN
PEOPLE

REF: A. STATE 45792
B. STATE 51536

1. (U) The prominent news daily "Romania Libera" (circulation
316,000) May 21 carried op-ed under the Ambassador's by-line
expressing solidarity with the people of Cuba. The
commentary recalled similar regimes in the former communist
states of Eastern Europe that were now defunct, and
highlighted the suffering of political detainees under the
repressive Cuban regime.

2. (U) Mission is also pleased to report that the popular
Carturesti Book and Tea Shop held a reception on May 21,
commemorating of their photographic exhibition: "It is our
problem, too -- the women of the prisoners of the Cuban
Spring," which is running through June 5. The exhibit is run
in association with the Human Rights Documentary Film
Festival running in Bucharest, from May 16-June 1. The very
moving "It is our problem, too" photo exhibition is sponsored
by the People in Need Foundation and the Konrad-Adenauer
Stiftung with support from the Hungarian Cultural Center and
the Romanian Peasant Museum. The introductory narrative
states:

"In mid-March 2003, while the world turned its attention to
the start of the war in Iraq, Fidel Castro used the cover
created by the war to arrest 75 human rights defenders,
independent journalists, librarians and opposition members.
In April, the arrested activists were subjected to hasty and
unfair trials, and quickly sentenced to an average of 20
years in prison. the families of these prisoners of
conscience are also suffering the consequences of the
government crackdown. Prisoners' family members are often
abused and threatened by authorities, and in some cases
members of local communities have been turned against the
families. The family members are also serving a sentence, a
price they are paying at home."
TAUBMAN

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