Press Release #12

10.07.2015 .
Havana, Cuba

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Tania Bruguera has her passport.

The day has arrived.
The Cuban government has returned Cuban artist Tania Bruguera‘s passport, and she is now legally allowed to travel outside the island again. In a meeting Friday, July 10, with State Security (including her parole officer), her Cuban passport (her only passport) was returned to her after having been confiscated six months ago when she attempted to realize a political performance in the city of Havana.

“I‘m not going to leave Cuba until I have an official document in my hands that legally guarantees that I can come back without any problems,declared Bruguera. Cuban authorities have promised to provide such a document in the next two weeks.

“My argument has never been about leaving Cuba; my argument is about working so there is freedom of expression and public protest in Cuba, so that violence against those who think different politically will be penalized accordingly. In Cuba people should feel free to say what they think without fear of losing their jobs or university standing, without fear of being marginalized or imprisoned,” said the artist.

“My wish is that someday the police at a protest will be proud that there is plurality of thought. My argument proposes amnesty and the elimination of the concept of the political prisoner, so that no one is ever again imprisoned for thinking for themselves. I don’t ever want to look into a Cuban’s eyes and see fear of saying what they think, or fear of being themselves,” said Bruguera.

“My argument has always been rooted in a need for a campaign of civic literacy, so that every Cuban knows their rights as citizens and how to defend them,” explained Tania.

Memory, Truth & Justice

“The concept of happiness shouldn’t be limited to beach, sex and partying (as is so often laid out as parameters in Cuba). To be truly happy, we must also be honest with ourselves, and that implies that there be consistency in what we think, what we say, and what we do,” asserted the artist from her home in Cuba.

Some have said to be happy we must forget. #YoTambienExijo (I Also Demand) will continue to promote human rights in Cuba, in Latin America, anywhere in this tumultuous world. We believe it is important to remember, to call out, and to find solutions to save those who are victims of abuses of power.

#YoTambien Exijo is not a political party but does take stands. #YoTambienExijo has the humanist conviction that human rights are above all parties, governments, religions or nations.

We are grateful to all the Cubans around the world who have supported our non-violent cause for freedom and plurality, and to all the international artists and institutions who have lent their names, their signatures, their bodies and souls to all the initiatives that have helped bring Tania Bruguera one step closer to freedom.

#YoTambienExijo is grateful to everyone, regardless of political difference, because it’s through diversity that our movement grows, through the sharing of ideas that life is nourished, and through plurality that societies advance and prosper.

We are grateful to all who have stood by Tania in Cuba so she wouldn’t feel alone, and to the more than two-thousand international personalities who have shown the value of Artivism and the role of Social Art. Happiness isn‘t forgetting; it‘s using Memory, Truth and Justice to make a better world each and every day.