Leader of Dissident Group ‘Ladies In White’ Uses Trip To Denounce Cuba’s Regime
Berta Soler doesn’t know what awaits her when she returns to her native Cuba once her tourist visa expires in about a month.
One of that country’s leading dissidents, Soler has traveled around Europe, where she received the Sakharov Prize, the highest human rights honor there, and now is making stops all around the United States, calling for an end to the Castro regime in Cuba.
Soler, 49, is the founder of Ladies in White. She is one of several high-profile dissidents who are traveling outside of Cuba under a new relaxing of restrictions by Cuban President Raúl Castro this year.
Many of the dissidents, unencumbered by the obstacles in Cuba to getting word out about oppression on the island, have held press conferences and spoken at forums to highlight human rights violations.
But what, if anything, will await them upon their return for their anti-government criticism, no one knows.
“I’m not afraid,” Soler said. “In Cuba there’s no liberty, but I still exercise my freedom of expression. I denounce the Cuban regime when I’m inside Cuba. When I’m outside, in a free country, I speak the truth about political prisoners, the reality of my country, the struggles for human rights, of the Ladies in White, and I denounce the Castro government.”
“When I go back, my love of my country is stronger than any fear of prison bars,” she said.
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