Civil Society Open Forum Asks Pope Francis to Meet with Representatives of Civil Society

Espacio Abierto de la Sociedad Civil Cubana en su reunión de este jueves 16 de julio. (14ymedio)
Government opponents gathered at the Civil Society Open Forum at its meeting on Thursday, July 16. (14ymedio)

Cuba’s Civil Society Open Forum launched a call for a plural and inclusive dialog at one of its regular meetings, on July 16, during which it sent a letter to Pope Francis and a statement about the increasing repression of the Ladies in White and other activists.

The request for dialog in this call is directed to the entities of civil society, the political organizations of the opposition, government authorities and the people in general.

The letter to the pope was delivered to the Apostolic Nunciature by Catholic priest Jose Conrado Rodriguez, the lay pastor Dagoberto Valdes and the pastor Mario Lleonart, where Pope Francis is asked to meet with representatives from Cuba’s civil society.

In particular, the letter highlights the violence against the Ladies in White and their companions, and against the Patriotic Union of Cuba (UNPACU). As a consequence of these actions numerous activists have been victims of brutal reprisals.

Some thirty activists, representatives of diverse organizations, discussed the possibilities and conditions under which they could engage in a political discussion with the powers that be.

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