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Cuba academic: Party expulsion order overturned

Posted on Friday, 07.08.11

Cuba academic: Party expulsion order overturned
By ANDREA RODRIGUEZ
Associated Press

HAVANA — A prominent Cuban intellectual who came under fire for an
unusually frank article denouncing high-level corruption says an order
expelling him from the Communist Party has been overturned.

Esteban Morales wrote Thursday on his personal website that a party
appeals commission called him in last week to tell him of its ruling.

"I was informed of the decision to nullify the separation order from the
municipal party community … to return my membership," Morales said.

An economist and columnist known for his work on topics including racism
and U.S. relations, Morales published the article that got him into
trouble in April 2010 on the website of the National Union of Writers
and Artists.

He wrote that some top officials were preparing to the spoils if
Cuba's communist political system disintegrates, and that graft posed a
greater threat to the state than the island's small, fractured community
of dissidents.

"Corruption is the true counterrevolution," Morales wrote.

The essay broke a taboo by openly discussing corruption rumors
surrounding the dismissal of a top government aviation who had
fought alongside Fidel and and Ernesto "Che" Guevara in the
1950s.

In the following months, authorities have reported trials and
convictions of dozens of Cubans, including one former Cabinet minister
and at least three foreign businessmen who were accused of falsifying
documents, fraud against the state and even laundering drug money.

Last July, Morales announced that his essay had led to an effort to
expel him from the Communist Party. At the time, he defended his right
to air his critiques and said he would appeal the decision.

Raul Castro himself has said fighting corruption is a major
challenge for Cuba, and this April he urged Communist Party members not
to keep quiet with their criticisms.

http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/07/08/2305517/cuba-historian-party-expulsion.html

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