Pastors for Peace Travels Successfully WIthout License
Over the past two
weeks, the 2012 Pastors for Peace Caravan to Cuba traveled through 101 cities
and towns collecting aid and telling their story
about the cruelties of the US blockade their way to the U.S.
are now in Texas preparing to cross the border -- with 100 tons of humanitarian
aid -- into Mexico on their way to Cuba -- without a license from the US
They are now in McAllen,
Texas, readying themselves and their aid for an act of conscience and
civil-disobedience -- crossing the border into Mexico on their way to Cuba
without the required license from the US Treasury Department. read more
Contact Lucia Bruno
(212) 926-5757 or (347) 423-4330
IFCO Co-Director Gail
Walker “The US
blockade has cost Cuba $750 billion in medical care, education equipment and
food, yet they still provide for their people and set an example for the world.
Now is the time to implement a people to people foreign policy that respects
Brian, from Little Rock,
This year's caravan is dedicated
to the sustainable development efforts of Cuba. Brian took that to heart and
decided to BIKE the caravan, from Little Rock to McAllen, Texas, or 826 miles!
"I was inspired to go on the caravan after the Pastors for Peace came through
Little Rock last year," he says. It's Brian's first time on the caravan and to
Cuba and he's eager to learn more about Cuba's green
Rose, a graduate of the Latin American School of Medicine in Havana.
Thanks to the generousity of Cuba, Dr. Rose received a full scholarship to study
medicine in Cuba.
Packing and manifesting
aid in McAllen.
418 West 145th Street | New York, NY 10031
CARAVAN TO CUBA RETURNS TO THE US; CONFRONTS US TRAVEL BAN. MEETS WITH ELIÁN GONZÁLEZ, MAKES APPEAL TO FREE THE CUBAN FIVE
McAllen, TX -- Members of the 20th anniversary Pastors for Peace Friendshipment Caravan to Cuba crossed back into the US the evening of July 31st after a month long journey through six provinces in Canada, 47 US states, Mexico and three provinces in Cuba.
As part of the Return Challenge, caravan members marched from Reynosa into McAllen, joined by local Mexican Cuba solidarity organizations, chanting "Cuba sí! Bloqueo no! " and "We've been to Cuba and we want you to know it!" as they entered US Customs, openly declaring their refusal to seek or accept a license from the US government to travel or bring aid to Cuba.
US border authorities demanded the caravanistas provide extensive information about their travel to Cuba, but in a united front, caravanistas refused to comply. "This kind of tactic of forcing people who travel to Cuba to "name names" is pure McCartheyism," said Lisa Valenti, who has participated in all 23 caravans.
"The US government subjects no other country in the world to such draconian travel restrictions. Why? What is the threat of a small island neighbor 90 miles away that offers free health care to the world?" added IFCO Co-Director Gail Walker.
"I'm a Vietnam Vet. I fought for this country. How can the US government tell me not to go to Cuba?" said Bill Hill, a veteran driver of the caravan.
Caravan members returned to the US after delivering nearly 100 tons of precious aid to Cuba and were victorious in getting US border authorities to return six computers retained at their border crossing on the 19th.
In Cuba the group met with Cuban faith, arts and community leaders throughout the island and visited hospitals and other institutions affected by the US blockade. Members also met with Elian Gonzalez and his father, who made a special appeal to free the Five Cubans imprisoned in the US for their anti-terrorist activities.
IFCO Co-Director Father Luis Barrios declared the group's continued solidarity with Cuba, "We will not rest until the Cuban Five are free and with their families in Cuba and until the immoral, genocidal US blockade is ended, once and for all."
The Pastors for Peace Friendshipment Caravan is a project of the Interreligious Foundation for Community Organization (IFCO), which has been working for racial, social, and economic justice since 1967.