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MIAMI (CBSMiami) — The Ladies in White and the Assembly of the Cuban Resistance gathered at the Bay of Pigs Museum Sunday announcing plans for a rally in Miami to mark the death of Fidel Castro.
Known on the communist island as “Las Damas de Blanco,” the Ladies in White were founded in 2003 as an opposition movement to Cuba’s government, made up of the wives and other female relatives of jailed dissidents and activists.
“We have called for the press conference today to ask our community to attend a rally for liberty and democracy in Cuba that will take place this coming Wednesday, November 30th at 5 p.m. at SouthWest 8th Street and 13th Avenue at the Bay of Pigs memorial,” said Humberto Arguelles, President of the Bay of Pigs Veterans Association.
Sylvia Iriondo, President of the Women Against Repression in Cuba, hopes the event will unite Cuban exiles who suffered under Castro’s rule.
“A Cuban exile community comprised of the old, like us, and of the young,” she said. “Of the men and of the woman, of the black and of the white, all united behind an idea, a dream, and of a commitment for the freedom of Cuba.”
Following the press conference, about two dozen Ladies in White marched down Damas de Blanco Way on S.W. 30th Avenue, wearing all white scarves and holding Cuban flags.
But there are different plans for the Ladies in White living in Cuba.
They called off their weekly march Sunday, saying they want to avoid any tension with their government.
“We have decided, as fighters of human rights groups, to respect the pain, which we don’t share,” said Berta Soler, the group’s co-founder and current leader of the opposition group. “We will respect, and have taken a recess on a national level, wherever the Ladies in White are, to not take to the streets today, to avoid provoking the government.”