[url=http://www.miami.com]http://www.miami.com[/url] | By Oscar Corral
Mexico’s legislature will decide whether to call for an investigation of the Cuban American National Foundation for alleged anti-Cuban terror. CANF rejects the allegations.
The Cuban American National Foundation is under fire from Mexican politicians demanding that the influential exile organization be investigated for “anti-Cuban activities in Mexico.’‘
The lower house of Mexico’s legislature is expected to vote next week on what it calls a ‘‘point of accord’’ on the issue.
‘‘In Mexican territory, between 1959 and 2004, Mexicans and people from other nationalities have ended up dead, injured or affected by terrorism from organizations like CANF,’’ the resolution’s supporting documentation states.
For example, the Mexican documents accuse CANF of being involved in an explosion that took place in 1997 at the Cubanacan Travel offices in Mexico City. They say the bomb was placed by a Salvadoran mercenary contracted by exile activist Luis Posada Carriles, who is called an ‘‘accomplice of Jorge Mas Canosa,’’ the foundation’s late leader.
CALLED A FALESHOOD
CANF’s new executive director, Alfredo Mesa, vehemently rejected the allegations, saying the foundation is considering legal action if the Mexican government moves forward.
‘‘This is the first time an elected body anywhere is going to condemn or investigate the foundation, which they say is conducting terrorist activities within its borders. We are looking at libel, or suing the Mexican government,’’ he said.
Most of the resolution is based on past allegations, including references to four Cuban exiles pardoned by Panama last year after being convicted in connection with a supposed plot to kill Fidel Castro. One of those pardoned was Posada, who still faces charges in Venezuela in connection with the 1976 bombing of a Cuban plane that killed 73 people.
Rodrigo Ivan Cortez, a legislator from Mexico’s PAN party, said he plans to support the resolution but noted that a ‘‘point of accord’’ usually has little consequence.
‘‘We are not saying that anybody is guilty or innocent,’’ Cortez said in an interview Friday night. “I plan to support it. It’s a question of, there are doubts about the activities of this foundation, so let it be investigated.’‘
The supporting documentation shows a pattern of trying to discredit the foundation and highlighting the divisions in the Cuban-American community over CANF.
ACCUSING CUBA IN TURN
Mesa said the document that accompanied the vote quoted from an article that ran in February in a magazine funded by Castro’s government. Mesa provided the Herald with a copy of the article, which ran in Milenio Semanal.
Mesa said the Mexican vote was orchestrated by Castro’s government.
‘‘In Havana and Miami, they try to discredit us, and in other countries they call us terrorists,’’ Mesa said. “This is a direct attack from the Mexican government on the foundation orchestrated by the Cuban government.’‘