Cuban women warmly welcomed

Issue 

Cuban women warmly welcomed

BY JACKIE LYNCH

MELBOURNE — Seventy people enjoyed a night of political discussion, delicious food and solidarity with the Cuban Revolution at Victorian's Trades Hall on July 22 to welcome Bertha Acosta and Nancy Iglesias Mildenstein from the Federation of Cuban Women (FMC) who toured Australia in July.

Resistance member Tessa Tomborou welcomed Acosta and Mildenstein, saying: "Young people of the world are inspired by the youth of Cuba who campaigned for Elian Gonzalez's return. We are inspired to make revolutions in our own countries for the liberation of us all."

Political discussion on the night centred on Cuba's resistance to imperialism and the challenges facing the revolution under the United States' blockade of the island. Acosta and Iglesias explained that maintaining the revolution's gains for women was dependent upon international solidarity to break the blockade.

Collaboration between countries of the South (Third World) is crucial, they said, as is people in te First World making revolutions in their own countries.

Cuba's stance against homophobia was also discussed. Iglesias said that attitudes in Cuba are changing and that the revolution is determined to eliminate all forms of prejudice. However, "It is faster to change the means of production than attitudes. That takes time", she said.

Acosta explained that Cuba's constitution prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, sexuality and gender, and that Cuba's gays, lesbians and transgender people are now playing leading roles in society.