SAN JUAN – At least 500 activists of Puerto Rico’s independence movement demonstrated in Old San Juan this Saturday in anticipation of a visit by the UN’s Special Committee on Decolonization, to arrive next Monday in this U.S. commonwealth.
Liliana Laboy, a member of the organizing committee of the demonstration, told EFE that the protest this Saturday had two goals: “To insist that it’s time to start the decolonization process that will bring us independence, and to support the hearings this Monday.”
“It’s past time to shed the trickery of the U.S. and the UN General Assembly, when they said that Puerto Rico was decolonized and we were taken off the list of non-autonomous territories,” said Laboy, a member of the Independentista Roundtable, organizer of Saturday’s march.
The UN Decolonization Committee has been studying the case of Puerto Rico since 1962 and has issued 34 resolutions requesting decolonization.
Also attending the protest Saturday was Heriberto Marin Torres, who when only 20 years old was one of the youngest revolutionaries to take part in October 1950 uprising against the United States in Puerto Rico.
“We are here today to protest against everything the empire (U.S.. government) is doing to us, but above all we are demanding independence for Puerto Rico,” Marin Torres told EFE.
Puerto Rico is a U.S. commonwealth, which enjoys great independence on internal matters, but must submit to Washington on issues to do with foreign relations.
Puerto Ricans are officially U.S. citizens.