In the beginning of March the International Committee for the Freedom of the Cuban 5 nominated the Cuban 5 for Global Exchange's 12th Annual Human Rights Award in the category of People's Choice Award. Alongside the Cuban 5 many other fighters for Human Rights were also nominated. For the Cuban 5, a case that has been kept in relative obscurity in the U.S., this offered solidarity activists calling for their freedom an opportunity to spread the word by getting people they know to vote for their cause. The campaign started slowly but soon took off through the linking of all the committees and individuals who support the Cuban 5 around the world. All the various forms of social media where utilized over and over again as the votes for the Five Heroes piled up and the campaign blossomed into a life of its own. This results is thanks to all the active support and solidarity that produced what can only be described as a success for the movement in support of the Cuban 5.
GLOBAL EXCHANGE SENT OUT THE FOLLOWING:
Well, for starters they are [the Cuban Five] the winners of Global Exchange's 2014 People's Choice Award.
In the spirit of the 'People's Choice' - you nominated, you voted, and you decided that on May 8, the Cuban Five will be honored alongside the Freedom Schools and María Estela Barco Huerta at the 12th annual Human Rights Awards in San Francisco, CA.
The Cuban Five are heroes to the Cuban people, well known to many around the globe, but to most in the United States, their case is unknown.
Ultimately jailed in the United States on charges that are widely recognized as trumped up, five Cuban agents were sent to Miami, FL in the 1990s - when violent anti-Castro groups were at a high and acting with impunity against Cuba and the Cuban people - The Five were to report and investigate these groups to stop terrorist attacks against Cuba. Their capture, detention, trials, and sentencing has been widely criticized, including calls for their release by eight international Nobel Prize winners and Amnesty International.
You can learn more about the case of the Cuban Five at the International Committee for the Freedom of the Cuba 5. Also watch this short video with Danny Glover.
Thank you to everyone who participated in this year's contest and congratulations to everyone nominated. It was wonderful to learn and celebrate the good works of so many activists around the globe. We truly honor all of you and hope to see lots of you at the Human Rights Awards on May 8th.
Membership & Outreach Officer