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Caravan Will Carry Supplies to Cuba

June 13, 1998|Religion News Service

WASHINGTON — On July 5, 60 vehicles carrying about 500 tons of humanitarian supplies destined for Cuba are scheduled to leave 14 cities across the northern United States en route to Texas and the Mexican border.

The caravans are the latest effort by Pastors for Peace, a New York-based offshoot of the Interreligious Foundation for Community Organization, to confront the nearly 4-decade-old U.S. economic blockade of Cuba.

Pastors for Peace, which is supported by Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran and Presbyterian groups, believes the embargo has devastated Cuba's economy.

"This is primarily an action-education process," the Rev. Lucius Walker, a Baptist minister who is the group's executive director, said Thursday.

"We feel compelled to continue to get out the word until this immoral embargo is ended."

It will be the group's eighth delivery in 10 years of medical and educational supplies to Cuba.

Past efforts by Pastors for Peace have encountered problems with U.S. officials, who have kept supplies from crossing into Mexico because the group refuses to seek legal clearance for the aid items. Members of the group have also been arrested. "We will not ask the government for permission to take our aid to Cuba because we refuse on moral grounds to participate in the U.S. blockade against Cuba," Walker said.

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