Update: Pastors End Cuban-Computer Fast
By Sam Parry
WASHINGTON -- With the Clinton administration's grudging release
of 300 first-generation computers which had been destined for
Cuban hospitals, four members of Pastors for Peace ended a
"We began to receive mail from concerned citizens from all
around the country on about the 60th day," a spokeswoman for
Pastors for Peace said. "People were begging the fasters to
stop. Many expressed their fears that the government would
never back down."
But with the government's release of the computers to Methodist
Church humanitarian workers at midnight Eastern time on May 24,
the fasters finally agreed to swallow bites of solid food.
Still, the release of the computers is far from a back-down on
Cuban trade policy. The computers remain in storage while
negotiations continue with the Treasury Department over how the
computers will be used in Cuba. Special trade licenses are
required by law to send anything but food and medicine to Cuba.
And the trade licenses could be a continued sticking point in
the negotiations. The Rev. Lucius Walker, the leader of the
fasters, said that Pastors for Peace will not submit an
application for a trade license. "To apply for a license is a
way of condoning the blockade," Walker said.
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