For 20 years, the slogan of "Cuba YES, Blockade NO" is the soul of the Pastors for Peace Caravan, which defying the irrational and criminal enforcement laws against Cuba, continue to carrying out humanitarian aid and a message of solidarity to the Cuban people.
Many obstacles and risks have faced the people who love peace and justice over these years, who have joined to this initiative that came into the hands of the Rev. Lucius Walker, who died on September 7th, 2010 and dedicated his entire life to defend just causes.
The US-Cuba Friendship caravans began in 1992 and since then have collected and transferred aid to Cuba each year without seeking permission from the U.S. Treasury Department, while the economic, commercial and financial embargo imposed by the United States has caused losses to the Caribbean country of more than 975 billion dollars.
Last year, for instance, its activists gathered over 100 tons of humanitarian aid on its tour of 130 U.S.cities, and at the U.S.-Mexico border, authorities seized 7 tons.
Now a new convoy is underway. Already in U.S.territory, after the customs authorities of that nation tried to prevent the caravan’s entry from Canada, saying they were transporting commercial merchandize that needed to pay a tariff.
The tenacity and determination of the caravanistas finally managed to successfully cross the border with its load of wheelchairs, and educational and sports articles voluntarily collected in various cities and communities in the province of British Columbia, Canada. A similar event took place at the same crossing last year.
"This is another glaring example of how the administration of President Barack Obama continues the criminal blockade of more than 50 years, instead of trying to normalize relations with Cuba," said Caravan spokesman Bill Hackwell.
The courage, dignity, and will that characterize men and women each year defending their decision to bring solidarity and love for a people who have resisted the difficulties generated by Washington’s blockade of a noble and small country that is also able to help other nations.
A work of kindness and generosity forged by Reverend Lucius Walker that throughout these years has tried to mitigate the negative effects of the hostile policy of various U.S.administrations, which have tried to break the Cuban people through hunger and disease.
However, as stated by Cuban Pastor Estela Hernández, a member of the Distribution Committee of the Caravan, the highest value carried by Pastors for Peace is the gesture that involves its project that goes beyond any political reasons.
From the moment that this new Caravan arrives in Cuba--scheduled for July 21st-- it will take its valuable help to every corner of the Island, because it works so that each Cuban city and town may receive some love, solidarity and hope.