Sumario: March 12, 2004: Declaration by the Presidency on behalf of the European Union on the award of the World Press Freedom Prize to Raúl Rivero (Brussels)
The European Union congratulates Mr. Raúl Rivero, the Cuban journalist and poet, on his recent award of the annual Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).
The European Union echoes the words of UNESCO Director-General, Koichiro Matsuura, at the announcement of the award, that "The Prize is a tribute to Raúl Rivero's brave and longstanding commitment to independent reporting, the hallmark of professional journalism".
Mr. Raúl Rivero is among 75 Cuban dissidents and independent journalists imprisoned last April following summary trials. The European Union invites the Cuban Government to reflect on the significance of the granting of this Prize to Mr. Rivero and again calls on the Cuban authorities to release without delay all the imprisoned dissidents, some of whom are reported to be suffering from serious ill-health.
The Acceding Countries Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, the Slovak Republic and Slovenia, the Candidate Countries Bulgaria and Romania, the Countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro, and the EFTA countries Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, members of the European Economic Area, align themselves with this declaration.