HAVANA TIMES, June 25 — U.S. President Barack Obama expressed today in a communiqué his “sincere hope” that all Cuban political prisoners be released and highlighted the work of five of the island’s dissidents, who were awarded the Democracy Award given by the private organization National Endowment for Democracy (NED), reported IPS.
NED receives most of its funding from the US Congress and is known for its support for undermining governments considered unfriendly to Washington, such as Cuba, Venezuela and Bolivia.
Earlier this year, Cuban President Raul Castro offered to swap the prisoners in Cuban jails, convicted of taking funds from the US government and associating with Miami based terrorist groups, for the Cuban Five, held in US prisons since 1998 for allegedly conspiring to commit espionage.
An appeal of the Cuban Five case was recently rejected by the US Supreme Court. For more on the case see: http://havanatimes.org/?p=5450