Chris Stephens

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Chris Stephens

Cuba Covid letter

April 15 2020, fifty one British members of parliament have written to Dominic Raab, the UK Foreign Secretary and acting Prime Minister to call for the US blockade of Cuba to be temporarily suspended during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Grahame Morris MP, Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Cuba, coordinated the letter which asks the British government to make a public statement and to raise the issue directly with its counterparts in the United States’ government.

The letter from the British parliamentarians cites examples from around the world where governments and international organisations have demanded that humanitarian aid be allowed in to Cuba to help the country fight COVID-19. It quotes Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Arancha Gonzalez, Spanish Foreign Minister, and Josep Borrell, the EU’s high representative for foreign affairs, who have all publicly called for sanctions to be suspended to Cuba and other sanctioned countries to allow for the delivery of essential supplies and medicine to stop the spread of the virus.

Yours sincerely,

Grahame Morris MP, Chair, APPG Cuba.

Dan Carden MP, Vice Chair, Kate Osborne MP, Vice Chair, Kim Johnson MP, Vice Chair, Paula Barker MP, Vice Chair, Alison Thewliss MP Allan Dorans MP, Amy Callaghan MP, Andy McDonald MP, Apsana Begum MP, Bell Ribeiro-Addy MP, Beth Winter MP, Carol Monaghan MP, Chris Law MP, Chris Stephens MP, Claudia Webbe MP, Clive Lewis MP, Dave Doogan MP, Diane Abbott MP, Geraint Davies MP, Ian Byrne MP, Ian Mearns MP, Ian Lavery MP, Imran Hussain MP, Joanna Cherry MP, John McDonnell MP, Jon Trickett MP, Kate Osamor MP, Kenny MacAskill MP, Kirsten Oswald MP, Kirsty Blackman MP, Lloyd Russell-Moyle MP, Margaret Ferrier MP, Marion Fellowes MP, Martyn Day MP, Mary Kelly Foy MP, Mick Whitley MP, Mike Amesbury MP, Mike Hill MP, Navendu Mishra MP, Olivia Blake MP, Owen Thompson MP, Rachel Hopkins MP, Richard Burgon MP, Ronnie Cowan MP, Sam Tarry MP, Sarah Champion MP, Stephen Bonnar MP, Stephen Flynn MP, Yasmin Qureshi MP, Zarah Sultana MP[1]

Miami Five Freedom Tour

After sixteen years in US jails, and a two year battle against the Home Secretary for visas to visit Britain, Cuban spies Rene Gonazalez and Gerardo Hernandez finally touched down on UK soil in the early hours of Friday 7 July 2016.

In the short time they were here for the Miami Five Freedom Tour, the two Cuban intelligence officers travelled more than 2,000 miles to speak at the most prestigious events in the British trade union and labour movement calendar.


The men and their families were warmly received at a joint Cuba Solidarity Campaign and All Party Parliamentary Group on Cuba parliamentary reception in the Jubilee Room in the Houses of Parliament. Parliamentarians from a broad range of parties attended including Labour, Conservatives, SNP, Sinn Fein and SDLP.

The reception was well attended by members of both the Commons and the Lords, with guests including Jeremy Corbyn, John McDonnell, Cat Smith, Ian Lavery, Catherine West, Chris Matheson, Chris Williamson, Richard Burgon, Francie Molloy, Chris Stephens, Mike Weir, Mark Durkan, Baroness Angela Smith, Baroness Gloria Hopper and Lord Richard Balfe.

Both Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell campaigned tirelessly for the freedom for the Miami Five whilst backbench MPs and have continued their support since becoming Leader of the Labour Party and Shadow Chancellor. They were both leading names in the campaign for visas for the Five and their involvement was instrumental in the eleventh hour visa victory. Speaking at the reception, Jeremy Corbyn paid tribute to “all those who campaigned for their freedom and attended the vigils outside the US embassy” over the years, many at which he had spoken.

Baroness Angela Smith, Leader of the Opposition in the House of Lords, hosted the event with Shadow Minister and chair of the APPG on Cuba, Cat Smith MP. Baroness Smith said: “The fact that the Five are free and here today shows that when we organise, when we campaign and when we fight together - we can win.”[2]

"Re-developing Class Politics"

Morning Star Scottish Autumn conference October 4 2015.


Carolyn Jones, Lynn Henderson, Neil Findlay MSP, Chris Stephens MP, Cllr Bill Butler, Vicky Grandon, Tam Kirby, Phil McGarry, Vince Mills, Tom Morrison, Jennifer McCarey, Mike Arnott.