Cuba Announces Political Trial for Accused Terrorist

May 18, 2007

HAVANA – The Cuban government announced it will conduct a “public political trial” this week for anti-Castro militant Luis Posada Carriles, whom Havana accuses of multiple terrorist acts and who was released last month without charge from U.S. custody, where he had been held pending trial for immigration violations.

The first secretary of the Union of Communist Youth, Julio Martínez, announced that during this week’s “political trial in anti-terrorist court,” Cuba will present “irrefutable evidence” showing Posada’s guilt in various acts of terrorism against the island of Cuba.

“We will present, one after another, those (pieces of) evidence that the U.S. government knows about but has systematically ignored, because to acknowledge and try Posada for what he is, a terrorist, is to denounce itself,”Martínez said.

Cuba and Venezuela accuse Posada of blowing up a Cubana de Aviacion jet in flight in 1976, killing 73 people, as well as bomb attacks on Cuban tourist hotels in Havana in 1997 that killed an Italian tourist. Both countries have requested his extradition, and Nicaragua is preparing to do the same.

A U.S. federal judge in El Paso, Texas, threw out seven immigration charges pending against the 79-year-old former CIA operative, Cuban-born, Venezuelan-naturalized citizen (NT, April 13).

Martínez said that at the oral hearing to be held in Havana, young prosecutors and judges will carry out their duties and call more than 40 witnesses from Nicaragua, Venezuela, Panama and other countries where the anti-Castro militant left evidence of his activities over several decades.

He explained that the Chief Prosecutor’s Office, the Cuban Supreme Court, the Interior Ministry and experts from the Foreign Ministry had all collaborated on organizing the Posada trial.

For the past few days, numerous demonstrations have been held on the island rejecting the U.S. decision to release Posada, who had been in custody there for the past two years for illegally entering the country and other immigration violations.

 

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