During the May 2008 Semi-Annual General Meeting of the Canadian Federation of Students (CFS) the following motion was passed:
"Be it further resolved that a letter be written to U.S. President George W. Bush, Condoleezza Rice, Barack Obama, Hilary Clinton, and John McCain demanding immediate freedom for the ’Cuban 5’".
The Cuban 5 are five Cuban men who were sent to Miami to investigate terrorist groups which have committed countless acts of terror against Cuba including the mid-air bombing of a Cuban airliner which killed all 73 people on board. The 5ive gave the information they had collected over to the U.S. government who then instead of charging and jailing the terrorists, jailed the Cuban 5ive anti-terrorist Heroes. The U.S. government has since charged and convicted these 5ive brave men with "conspiracy to commit espionage" and "conspiracy to commit murder". The 5ive will have been in prison for ten years this September.
The Canadian Federation of Students represents over half a million students in Canada and has a membership of over 80 college and university students’ unions.
In this time when the criminal U.S. government is trying to close the case of the 5ive in their favour and hold them indefinitely in prison, it becomes so much more important to spread the word and cry of injustice in the case of our 5ive brothers.
This is a great step forward for the movement to free the 5ive as the weight of half a million students in Canada is added to the international movement to free the 5ive.
The letter written to the U.S. Government on behalf of the Canadian Federation of Students appears in full below.
Free the Cuban 5ive Now!
June 9, 2008
President George W. Bush
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
The Canadian Federation of Students is Canada’s national students’ organization representing more than one half million students across Canada. At our May semi-annual general meeting, students’ unions passed a resolution calling on the Government of the United States for their immediate release from prison.
The Cuban Five are five Cuban men currently serving four life sentences in a U.S. prison after being unjustly convicted in a U.S. federal court in Miami, on June 8, 2001, a decision that was upheld by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta, Georgia on June 4, 2008. It is our understanding that these five men, Gerardo Hernández, Ramón Labañino, Antonio Guerrero, Fernando González and René González, were falsely accused by the U.S. government of committing espionage against the United States, and other related charges.
Upon their arrest the "Cuban 5" were kept in solitary confinement for 17 months without access to legal representation or information about the charges to be laid against them.
On May 27, 2005, the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention ruled that the detention of the five Cuban political prisoners is arbitrary and in violation of international law. The UN ruling also found that the Cubans were denied access to the totality of the evidence against them and that their lawyers were also denied access to the information needed to defend their clients adequately. In addition, Adriana Perez and Olga Salanueva, wives of prisoners Gerardo Hernández and René González, have been denied entry into the United States to visit them in jail, violating their human rights, international conventions and treaties, and the U.S Constitution. In a report released on May 28, 2008, Amnesty International also denounced the delay in the appeal process, the lack of evidence against the Cuban 5 and the prosecution’s improper conduct.
The ruling of the United Nations and Amnesty International confirms that the case of the Cuban 5 is a highly political trial that was thoroughly unfair and unjust. As such, we urge you to act immediately to allow visitation rights to the family of the Cuban Five and to release them from jail without delay.
c.c. Secretary Condoleezza Rice, Department of State
c.c. Senator Hillary Clinton, New York
c.c. Senator Barack Obama, Illinois
c.c. Senator John McCain, Arizona