The U.S. administration was forced to recognize that we did not endanger national security

• Statement from Antonio, Ramón and Fernando after the re-sentencing hearings in Miami

MIAMI.— The re-sentencing proceedings for three of the five Cuban anti-terrorists concluded yesterday after a hearing in the Federal Court of this southern Florida city. Ramón Labañino Salazar was handed down a new prison term of 30 years and Fernando González Llort was sentenced to 17 years plus nine months.

Although the new sentences are still unjust, they modify the former ones against Ramón (life plus 18 years) and Fernando (19 years) and are evidence of the role played by international solidarity in support of this cause and the untiring work of the legal team.

Despite heavy discipline in the court, the shackles… it was impossible to prevent Ramón and Fernando from appearing with their heads held high, their fists in the air, and smiles of encouragement for friends, not only from the United States, who came to show their support.

After the judge pronounced the verdict, a statement in the names of Antonio, Ramón and Fernando in which they confirm the political nature of the trial, was presented to various media sources. They drew attention to the situation of Gerardo Hernández Nordelo, who is serving two life sentences plus 15 years, and “who has been arbitrarily excluded from these re-sentencing proceedings.”

The document specifies that, as was the case at the time of their arrest on September 12, 1998 and on other occasions since then, “we have once again received proposals to cooperate” in exchange for being given lenient sentences but “we reject them as something that we will never accept under any circumstances,” they affirm. They also noted that, for the first time in 11 years, the U.S. administration is being forced to acknowledge that “we did not endanger their national security.”

Antonio, Ramón and Fernando were transferred to Miami for the re-sentencing hearings, in compliance with a ruling from the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta, Georgia, which determined that the previous sentences had been erroneously imposed.

On October 13 in the same courtroom, Antonio Guerrero Rodríguez’ sentence was reduced from life plus 10 years, the sentence handed down in 2001, to 21 years and 10 months. Meanwhile, René González Sehwerert is serving his sentence in a Florida penitentiary.

After the hearing, the Alianza Martiana organized a political reaffirmation event, in which members called on President Obama to immediately release the Five.

Translated by Granma International


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