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    An Update on the ‘Reforms’ in Cuba

    October 18, 2014

    An Update on the ‘Reforms’ in Cuba
    By Silvio Canto, Jr.

    We keep hearing about all of those reforms in Cuba. Even the NY Times
    is now promoting an end to the embargo because of the reforms.

    Here is the truth: reforms in Cuba are a farce!

    Just ask Reverend Mario Felix Lleonart-Barroso. He is a pastor in Cuba
    under siege from the Castro regime, as reported by Christian Solidarity

    Reverend Mario Felix Lleonart Barroso, a prominent religious freedom
    activist and church leader, was officially summoned to the State
    Security Unit in Camajuani, Villa Clara on 8 October. He was threatened
    with arrest if he did not appear. At the unit a Lieutenant Colonel read
    out an Official Warning or “Acta de Advertencia”, a document that can be
    used as justification for future arrests and criminal charges. Two
    witnesses, whom the pastor did not recognize, were present and offered
    testimony of his “counter-revolutionary” links. This is the third time
    that government agents have unsuccessfully attempted to pressure
    Reverend Lleonart Barroso into signing an Acta de Advertencia.

    According to Reverend Lleonart Barroso, who leads the Ebenezer Baptist
    Church in the town of Taguayabon in Villa Clara Province, and who is a
    member of the Western Baptist Convention, one of the largest registered
    religious organisations on the island, the Lieutenant Colonel told him
    verbally that the government was unhappy about the pastor’s recent visit
    to the eastern part of the country. The official added that if the
    pastor did not change his behaviour soon, a criminal case would
    “probably be filed.”

    The purpose of Reverend Lleonart Barroso’s visit was to meet with church
    leaders who had reported violations of religious freedom. Reverend
    Lleonart Barroso met with Pastor Yiorvis Denis, the leader of a church
    in Camaguey which has come under repeated threat of forced closure and
    confiscation of property. He also met with Pastor Esmir Torreblanca, the
    leader of a large church in Santiago that was razed by the government in

    Reverend Lleonart Barroso told Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW), “I
    intend to continue on with my activities in the defence of religious
    freedom in Cuba.”

    Let’s say that Reverend Lleonart-Barroso did not get the memo about
    greater tolerance or freedom in Cuba.

    The New York Times’ editorial board got the memo, but not Rev

    For years, the church in Cuba has been targeted for two reasons:

    1) the regime fears that pastors are talking about freedom and
    commitment to a supreme being not named Castro.

    2) More and more young people are going to churches.

    As we’ve said before, there should be no talks or negotiations with the
    Castro regime until:

    1) Mr. Gross, a U.S. citizen, is released;

    2) independent journalists and pastors are allowed to operate freely; and,

    3) the opposition, and specially “Las damas en blanco,” are not harassed
    by government thugs. (“Las damas en blanco” are a group of ladies who
    march every Sunday calling for the government to release their husbands,
    sons, or brothers from prison.)

    In the meantime, tell your pastor, priest, or rabbi about Rev.
    Lleonart-Barroso. We should be praying for him and his wife, who is
    being harassed constantly.

    Source: Blog: An Update on the ‘Reforms’ in Cuba –