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ILWU at LA rally against the US blockade of Cuba

The head of the LA Hands Off Cuba Committee, Diana Cervantes, called the weekend’s rally “the largest coordinated effort ever on an international scale.” She said, we know Cuba needs to get the boot of the US government off their necks. Cervantes chaired the rally alongside the San Diego Cuba Committee’s (We Are One), Angelica Cardona.

IBU leader Mike Vera at the Oct. 29, LA rally against US blockade of Cuba- Walter Lippman.

The protest of 125, the largest ever in LA against the US blockade of Cuba coincided with scores of protests in the US, Canada, and worldwide at the US federal building (Westwood), on Oct. 29.

“The Los Angeles Hands-off Cuba Committee has been organizing caravans, public meetings with Carlos Lazo of Puentes de Amor, and collecting money for medical Aid and food for Cuba,” added Linh Co, a young Vietnamese committee activist. “We have to survive here every day, paying outrageous rents, but the people of Cuba need our continued efforts to end the blockade, force the US to remove Cuba from the list of nations supporting terrorism, and end the 243 Trump/Biden sanctions.”

Floyd Bryan, representing the Southern CA District of the ILWU reported that the union had passed a resolution against the blockade and gave $10,000 for medical aid to Cuba.

“Recently we hosted a meeting for Cuban Ambassador to the US, Lianys Torres. Cuba needs to be off the state terrorism list…they never were terrorists and won’t ever be,” Bryan said.

The ILWU delegation included Mike Vera, business agent for the union’s marine division.

“Along with you my brothers and sisters, the inland boatmen’s union stands firm in its conviction to support the people of Cuba and denounce the United States policies that bring such devastating harm to the Cuban people,” Vera said. “Recently our Regional Executive Committee passed a couple resolutions to this effect. This resolution addresses the US erroneous complaint that the country of Cuba is the sponsor of terrorism.”

Vera, speaking on behalf the Inlandboatmen’s Union of the Pacific, Southern California Region, urged President Joe Biden, Congress, and each federal representative in its jurisdiction, to remove Cuba from the list of state sponsors of terrorism. Vera also urged our congressional delegation to pass legislation that would eliminate aspects of the embargo that have been codified into law; and remove all sanctions against Cuba by the United States.

“We call on the Biden administration to end all US anti-Cuba economic, trade and travel sanctions and to end the US blockade against Cuba,” Vera said.

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