HAVANA, CUBA, May 3, 2023 – After spending 10 days in Cuba, the historic delegation of over 150 young leaders from across the United States comes to a close. The participants return to the U.S. with an even greater commitment to continue building their struggles at home and to fight for the end of the blockade of Cuba.
The delegation, organized by the International Peoples’ Assembly (IPA), included trade unionists, cultural workers, anti-police brutality activists, tenant organizers, and scientists from diverse organizations in the U.S.
During their time in Cuba, the delegates met and exchanged with representatives of the LGBTQI+ community, Afro-Cuban organizations, students and professors from the internationalist medical school ELAM, popular education groups, scientists, athletes, artists, and many others.
In these exchanges, members of the brigade learned about the experiences of the Cuban people in building organizations and legislation to guarantee the fulfillment of people’s economic and social rights, such as health care, education, housing, physical activity, employment, and others.
Many presenters also underlined that the blockade that has been in place for over six decades, was intensified by former president Donald Trump who placed an additional 243 unilateral coercive measures against Cuba and included the country in the state sponsors of terrorism list. All these decisions have been upheld by President Joe Biden.
The fuel shortage crisis that the people of Cuba face today, is a clear manifestation of the challenges the country faces even in the most basic level of international trade due to the U.S. blockade.
Kawenaʻulaokalā Kapahua of the Academic Labor United and a participant on the delegation from Hawai’i said, “We leave with a greater understanding of the aggression against Cuba, but more than that, with concrete lessons about how to build unity in diversity, how to defeat an enemy which seems undefeatable, and how to, above all, center love and hope in everything we do.”
“We have tremendous tasks ahead of us. Our generation has the historic duty to defeat, once and for all, the murderous blockade; to organize and fight in our communities, on the streets, in Congress, and on social media to build the broadest movement possible to stand in solidarity with Cuba and against U.S. aggression.”