“If someone is responsible, it´s me”

Former Cuban President Fidel Castro took responsibility for the persecution after of homosexuals in the country, saying he did not pay attention to the suffering the group was made to suffer.

Following the 1959 revolution, many homosexual Cubans were shipped off to labor camps in the countryside, during one of the worst waves of persecution they suffered.

“If someone is responsible, it´s me,” Castro said in an interview with Mexican newspaper La Jornada.

The 84-year-old former president, who handed the reigns over to his brother Raul in 2008 after falling ill two years earlier said after the revolution, his government had been fighting off the CIA and “traitors” who wanted to bring down his government.

Even into the 1980s, homosexuality was accepted as grounds for firing or prohibition from study. While the island´s community has clamored for more rights, discrimination continues and raids and harassment have been reported in recent years.

“Yes, there were moments of great injustice – a great injustice!” Castro said in the interview with Mexican journalist Carmen Lira. “I´m trying to define my responsibility in all of this because later on, personally, I don´t have those kids of prejudices.

“We had so many problems that were a matter of life or death that we didn´t pay attention… ,” he continued.

In an interview with blogger Jeffrey Goldberg of the US magazine The Atlantic, Castro said: “The Cuban model doesn´t even work for us anymore,” after he was asked whether the Cuban system was worth exporting.

 

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