9th Colloquium for Cuban Five in Holguín, Cuba

y Gloria La Riva, Nov. 14 — Holguín

It was a long road to freedom for Cuban Five hero René González, who suffered 13 years in U.S. prison and almost two years of forced probation in the United States, for the “crime” of protecting his people of Cuba from U.S.-sponsored terrorism.

Yet, he retains that exceptional spirit and optimism that was never dampened while imprisoned.

That was evident from the 278 activists from 51 countries, who heard him speak today at the ninth “International Colloquium for the Cuban Five” here in the eastern Cuban city of Holguín. Everywhere he has appeared in the panels, cultural performances and the streets of Holguín, González received standing ovations.

González recalled his time in prison to urge all to fight the injustice of his four brothers’ imprisonment.

“I was 13 years in prison. I believe that one uses certain mechanisms to confront that situation, mechanisms to grow with, even in the worst circumstances — as I have always said — to leave prison better than when I entered. And one mechanism that I always used was not to count the time.”

Photo captions from top: 1) Taylor Clark, Ramsey Clark’s granddaughter; Kenia Serrano, ICAP president; René, wife Olga, daughter Irma, Ramón’s daughter Laura. 2) Participants in 9th Colloquium, Holguín, Cuba. 3) Ramsey Clark with Mirta Rodríguez, mother of Antonio, Irma Sehwerert, mother of René, and Magali Llort, mother of Fernando, after he receives The Order of Solidarity.

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