Glover spoke about the injustice and in particular about his long-standing friendship with Gerardo Hernández, who he has visited several times in the Victorville, California maximum security prison.
He called on those present to join efforts to free the Five, as the five Cubans,
Hernández, Ramón Labañino, Antonio Guerrero, Fernando González and René González, are known - the last being the only one of the group to have returned to Cuba after completing his sentence in full.
The panel was organized by the National Committee to Free the Cuban Five and also included as speakers Richard Klugh, trial and appellate attorney for the Five, and Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, executive director of the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund.
Additionally participating were Eugene Puryear, Howard University student and Gloria La Riva, coordinator of the solidarity group sponsoring the event.
Klugh described some examples of the history of violence against Cuba in the 1990’s which led to the efforts of The Five to infiltrate and investigate groups planning this violence, and highlighted the irony of their jailing for attempting to thwart illegal violence, insisting that they did nothing to threaten U.S. national security.
La Riva recalled that many Cubans opposed to the January 1, 1959 Revolution settled in Miami, and organized from this city numerous illegal, violent efforts to disrupt and overthrow the Cuban government, often aided and abetted by the U.S. government.
Mara Verheyden-Hilliard emphasized the importance of the recent federal court ruling in her organization’s Freedom of Information Act suit which is requiring the Justice Department to release information about how the government paid Miami journalists to create a climate of hatred against Cuba and the defendants at the time of their trial.
She also spoke highly of the commitment to justice of UDC Law students with whom she has worked over the years and urged current students to participate in the organization’s ongoing efforts on this case.
The Five were convicted in an unjust trial, plagued by irregularities and violations of basic rights, and sentenced to prison terms ranging from 15 years to double life.
Beginning this past September 5, through October 6, activities are taking place around the world to demand that the U.S. government put an end to this injustice. (PL)