On the Passing of Oswaldo Paya

The Foundation for Human Rights in Cuba expresses its profound condolences at the passing of Oswaldo Payá Sardiña in a car crash of unclear circumstances yesterday in Bayamo, Cuba.

Mr. Payá was leader of the Christian Liberation Movement and founder of the Varela Project which gathered more than 25,000 signatures in two petitions that were presented to the Cuban government for reforms.  Recipient of the prestigious Sakharov Prize in 2002 and a nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize, Mr. Payá was a champion of human rights for the Cuban people.

The Foundation for Human Rights in Cuba, its Board, staff and leadership, join the Cuban community in exile in conveying to Oswaldo Payá’s family and all the brave defenders of Cuban liberty who worked with Mr. Payá, our deepest feelings of grief, respect and admiration, along with our unbreakable promise to continue the struggle for which he devoted his entire life until his dreams of freedom come true.

While details about the crash that ended Mr. Payá’s life are still unconfirmed, FHRC awaits news from the two foreign passengers who were in the car with Mr. Payá.  Spanish national Angel Carromero Barrios and Swedish national Aron Modig were in the car with Mr. Payá, along with Cuban national Harold Cepero who also passed in the crash.  The Foundation for Human Rights in Cuba calls on members of Cuban independent civil society, as well as the international community to conduct a thorough independent investigation into these unfortunate deaths.

Foundation for Human Rights in Cuba