HAVANA TIMES, Sept 2 — The Ladies in White, a group of dissident Cuban women, has once again asked the Catholic Church to intercede on its behalf with the government of Raul Castro.
The Ladies began their protests by demanding the release from prison of their 75 husbands and sons over seven years ago.
Now, with their loved ones free after a deal brokered between the Cuban government and the Catholic Church, the group is trying to maintain its political activism.
The women have turned anew to Cardinal Jaime Ortega asking that he convince the authorities to put a stop to the “repudiation rallies” and other pressures against them, reported IPS on Friday.
“We want them to allow us to carry out our marches on September 8, the Day of the La Virgen de la Caridad del Cobre (Virgin of Charity), and on September 24, the day of La Virgen de la Merced (Our Lady of Mercy), the patron saint of prisoners”, Bertha Soler, a member of the Ladies in White, told IPS.
Commenting on a meeting with Church spokesperson Monsignor Ramon Suarez Polcari on Tuesday Soler said: “They told us that as soon as the cardinal meets with the government authorities they will let us know the answer.”
Soler noted that in a recent trip to Santiago de Cuba she was detained for three hours, accused of altering the public order. “They put me in a prisoner’s uniform,” she added.
Women identifying themselves as the Ladies in White and their supporters have been detained by police on several occasions when attempting to attend the Sunday Mass at the Cathedral in Santiago de Cuba, stated their spokespersons, informed IPS.