The United States Interests Section paid tribute to the leader and founder of the Ladies in White, Laura Pollan, with a reception at the residence of Mr. John Caulfield Chief of Section, between the hours of 9:00 – 11:00 a.m. the morning of Dec. 7. Official state security photographed participants coming and going from the event.
Laura Maria Labrada Pollan daughter of Laura and Secretary of the National Executive Committee of the Cuban Independent and Democratic Party (CID) confirmed that the gala tribute was part of the Celebration of the Human Rights Week and was dedicated to Agnes Laura Pollan Toledo, founding leader Ladies in White Movement that now bears her name, after her physical death on October 14, without being aware of the real causes of death.
“The memorial ceremony opened with welcoming remarks by the Chief of the Interest Section of Interests of the United States in Havana to the participants,” he continued. “Among the participants we were family, political prisoners, Ladies in White, bloggers and members of the diplomatic corps accredited in Cuba on behalf of their countries.”
The program consisted of several papers, beginning with her widower, the former prisoner of conscience Hector Maceda, titled “Laura, Her Presence and Her Legacy”; “Laura, La Mariana of her time” by Berta Soler; “A woman who helped to reclaim the streets for Cuba’s peaceful opposition,” by Guillermo Fariñas Hernández”; “Laura, in her words,” by her daughter Laura Maria Labrada; “Laura the future ahead,” by Yoani Sanchez, who interspersed her speech with a multimedia presentation illustrating the 63 year life of Laura Pollan; and concluding with the words of the Assistant secretary of State Roberta Jacobson.
Her daughter thanked those who in one form or another worked on or participated in the event.
Katia Sonia Martín Véliz
December 8 2011