Excerpt from a speech by the President of the National Assembly of the Republic of Cuba, Ricardo Alarcon de Quesada, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of Cuban Institute of Friendship with the Peoples (ICAP)

…with the power that the imperialists have they have been able to practice against the Cuban population the most prolonged genocide in history. In the meantime, they provide shelter for their worst assassins such as the one who lives in Miami and  recently published an infamous book where he boasts of his crimes. 

At the same time they unjustly imprison 5 Cubans who sacrificed their lives to save their fellowmen from the evil deeds of terrorists that Washington has tacitly tolerated and granted impunity.

Now, the day is coming when the US has to respond to the petition of Habeas Corpus on behalf of Gerardo Hernández Nordelo, which is his last legal recourse. At the same time the media in Miami is miserably and cowardly slandering him and trying to deceive and diverting attention to confuse the solidarity movement. Other from the right of Cuba to defend its sovereignty, there was not any evidence produced to directly link Gerardo Hernandez to the alleged crime.

At this juncture they are trying to  trick us and make us forget that in May 2001, in a dramatic and urgent demand before the Court of Appeal, the prosecutors recognized that they were lacking proof of direct knowledge and requested to modify the original accusation presented against our compañero.

Despite that, he was sentenced to an extraordinary amount of time for a crime that he did not commit or could have physically carried out. It is hardly possible to find a similarly planned injustice.

We have made a call to the solidarity movement and to all honest people to raise their voices in defense of Gerardo. The United States government knows he is innocent and that they never had any proof to accuse him. We have to demand that they free him now.

To free him and also Ramon, Antonio, Fernando and René, five Heroes of the Republic of Cuba. President Obama can and should free them right now, without conditions, immediately. All of them, and each and every one of the Five without exception.

Unrelentingly demanding that President Obama free them will be our promise for the New Year. Let the whole world continue to ask President Obama to free them.

He knows that he can and that he should do it.