Next week Mariela Castro, daughter of Cuban president Raul Castro and Fidel Castro’s niece will be hosting Cuba’s first LGBT International LGBT Rights Convention.
While homosexuality is legal in Cuba, no LGBT rights legislation exists officially. In 2010 Fidel Castro publicly apologized for the treatment of LGBT people during his regime, calling it a “great injustice.” Thousands of gay people were rounded up and placed in internment camps while he was in power. At the height of the AIDS crisis, HIV+ Cubans were quarantined. Today Cuba produces generic HIV drugs and provides them free of charge.
Via The Washington Blade reports:
The sixth International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association for Latin America and the Caribbean (ILGALAC) Regional Conference will take place in the beach resort of Varadero. A number of parties and other events are scheduled to take place in nearby Havana, the Cuban capital, during the gathering. “As the host country for the sixth ILGALAC Regional Conference, Cuba is not exempt from the problems of the region’s LGBTI communities,” states the organization. “The humanistic nature of the Cuban Revolution has focused on the human being in his teleological purposes since its beginning. Although the Cuban LGBTI movement does not have the organization of other international movements, the fight against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in the country is now evident with more impact and achievements.”
US Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) spoke out against the conference saying: “Hosting a conference on LGBT rights is just another farcical attempt by the Cuban regime to pretend they care about anyone’s rights. The sad reality is that the Cuban people are harassed, beaten and bullied for having a point of view that differs from the regime’s. This desperate move to seem tolerant does not even come close to obscuring the repressive reality on the island.”
“Harassed, beaten and bullied” Funny Ileana sounds a lot like Florida in some places.