MIAMI, United States.- The Latin American Federation of Rural Women issued a statement on Wednesday in which it supports the young Cuban mother Amelia Calzadilla, who “has not only shaken the sensitivity of urban families with her brave speech, but also of the rural”.
The document denounces that the island’s government has neglected to a greater extent the areas farthest from the cities, which have been condemned to unproductivity by economic policies.
“While hunger spreads among the population, our fields sink into the misery and unproductiveness to which they have been condemned by the government’s economic policies. The state has disregarded the basic needs of citizens – food, health, electricity, transportation, education – to dedicate scarce resources to building luxury hotels that remain empty in the midst of the most basic needs of subsistence.
The Federation assures, regarding the hotels, that “as Cuban economists have shown, the cost of building a room in them would allow the purchase of 10 tractors to till the idle land. But those who can set the country in a different direction continue to show more interest in crushing all private initiative than in providing a solution to the population’s hardships. The ideas and projects of the common citizen are suffocated in the fields and cities”.
Likewise, in the statement they add that “in March 2020, the Cuban peasant women associated with the Latin American Federation of Rural Women (FLAMUR) together with the League of Independent Peasants of Cuba, published a letter that we titled “Without a Field there is no Country””, in which they presented a five-point program to avoid the famine that was coming and today it knocks on the doors of Cuban families.”
The program included “freedom for the production and distribution of our products; freedom to set the prices of our products according to the market; freedom to import and export directly, even from the United States, where it is proven that its laws do not prevent it, due to our condition as independent peasants; eliminate for ten years all taxes on food producers and processors; and deliver permanent property titles to all agricultural producers.”
At that time, the statement claims, they asked to avoid a famine by lifting the internal blockade on free agricultural production, however, “what did the government respond? Any. He ignored us and announced a state plan of 63 measures –managed by the state– to provide a solution to food security”.
“As expected, famine and scarcity are today the reality that Amelia refers to. They do not want to grant economic freedoms, nor legalize the property of all those who produce private goods and services, whether rural or urban. They want a “private sector” under their control and without real autonomy,” they added.
The Latin American Federation of Rural Women denounces that the Cuban government has a “selfish and annexationist mentality. Right now, they are not directing their steps to empower enterprising citizens but to deceive the Office of the Treasury (OFAC) of the Biden administration, in charge of applying sanctions to other countries.”
“They are disguising the businesses of their families and unconditional supporters as independent private companies. In this way, they pretend that they are the ones who benefit from the clause that would exempt them from economic sanctions if their businesses were really private, which they are not, ”explains the text.
That is why the federation reiterates that “the five points that as peasants we demanded from the government 2 years ago to guarantee food for the population be accepted. We do so inspired by the dignity and courage with which Amelia presented herself -surrounded by an enormous police deployment worthy of a dangerous terrorist-, to the “interview” with officials interested in inducing her to repentance. The Inquisition is alive in Cuba. Certain. But know that reluctance is also. The fight continues!”, they conclude.
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