Conference for Peace and the Abolition of Foreign Military Bases Demand Guantánamo’s Return to Cuba

The demand that the U.S. return territory illegally occupied by the Guantánamo Naval Base was reiterated by 248 participants from 32 countries attending the Fifth International Seminar for Peace and the Abolition of Foreign Military Bases.

|merencio@granma.cu
May 10, 2017

GUANTÁNAMO.— Support for the Cuban people in their demand that the United States government return territory illegally occupied by the Guantánamo Naval Basewas reiterated by María do Socorro Gomes, president of the World Peace Council.

On speaking during the Fifth International Seminar for Peace and the Abolition of Foreign Military Bases, Socorro also called for support of Cuba’s fight for an end to the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the United States against the country for over 50 years.

The president of this international movement, which campaigns for the independence, sovereignty, and integrity of the world’s nations, called for increased solidarity with the government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, currently under U.S. imperialist attack, in collusion with other nations and the Organization of American States (OAS).

The United States has more than 800 military bases spread over five continents (accounting for 95% of the world’s total), with the aim of promoting wars, plundering the resources of peoples, blackmailing governments and global domination, the Brazilian pacifist stressed.

The hosting of this seminar in Guantánamo is of particular importance due to the historic participation of this province in the struggles for national independence, and because it is here where the United States illegally occupies part of Cuba’s territory, stated José Ramón Balaguer Cabrera, member of the Party Central Committee Secretariat and head of its International Relations Department.

Silvio Platero Yrola, president of the Cuban Movement for Peace and Sovereignty of the Peoples (MOVPAZ), highlighted the participation in the event of 248 guests and delegates from a total of 32 countries. Among those present was a group of young international students currently studying at the Guantánamo University of Medical Sciences, the host venue of the seminar.

The event included several presentations: The Trump Government, the Middle East and the U.S. Military Base in Guantánamo, by retired colonel of the United States Army Ann Wright; and The Current State of the Foreign Military Presence of Imperialist Powers, by MOVPAZ collaborator Dr. Carbonell Vidal.

Also attending the Fifth Seminar were Denny Legrá Azahares, member of the Party Central Committee and its provincial secretary; and Emilio Matos Mosqueda, vice president of the Provincial Assembly of People’s Power.

No to military bases in Latin America

The intentions of the U.S. government to install new military bases in Latin America were denounced during the 5th seminar.

These efforts are acquiring greater force in Argentina, where the government of is opening the door to the possible establishment of new military installations in the country, according to remarks made by writer and journalist Carlos Aznárez, director of Resumen Latinoamericano.

The push for these military bases is justified with a number of pretexts, among them the need to support “humanitarian aid interventions” – a sign of the times. Faced with these plans, the continent’s people must mobilize to support adherence to the mandates of ALBA, Unasur and CELAC, which have declared the region a Zone of Peace, and not a launch pad for imperial powers, Aznárez said.

During the event, other presentations were discussed, all corroborating that the objectives of such foreign military bases include functioning as espionage and rapid response centers, for training and monitoring, and providing logistical support to military actions, as well as to apply coercion and extortion on local governments and peoples.

Delegates also paid their respects to Mariana Grajales in the Plaza de la Revolución which bears her name, and participated in a plenary session in the Rubén López Sabariego Cultural Center.

FINAL DECLARATION

The call made by pacifists, anti-war activists, and honest persons from the entire world, was to continue demanding that the United States return to the Cuban people the territory illegally occupied by the Guantánamo Naval Base, and end the economic, commercial, financial blockade of the country, as emphasized in the Final Declaration of the 5th International Seminar for Peace and the Abolition of Foreign Military Bases.

The document demanded the closing of other bases and military enclaves around the world, and called for the immediate withdrawal of foreign occupation troops from countries where they have been deployed.

It denounces economic, political, and military aggression and intervention by U.S. imperialism and its NATO allies in numerous countries, alerting peoples to the danger of a nuclear world war that could wipe out humanity.

Taking into consideration this dangerous context, the document calls for expanding efforts to disseminate the Proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace, and to strengthen the struggle against terrorism, a phenomenon created and encouraged by imperialism to destroy peoples who do not bow down before them.

The Final Declaration likewise calls for condemnation of interventionist actions by imperialism and the local oligarchy in Venezuela directed toward destroying the Bolivarian Revolution, an offensive which is threatening peace in the entire region.

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