saving elian

arrow Francisco Aruca

photo of francisco aruca Now considered a moderate Cuban-American, Aruca conspired against the revolutionary government in Cuba in the late 1950s, and was sentenced to jail for working with the underground. After escaping, he came to the U.S. and studied economics at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., and did graduate work at Catholic University.

In 1979, he founded Marazul Tours, a travel agency headquartered in New York that provides service to Cuba. He is president of Marazul Tours, and also is a radio commentator on Miami's Radio Progreso.

arrow Max Castro

photo of max castro He is a senior research associate at the University of Miami's North-South Center. Castro is also a regular columnist for The Miami Herald, El Nuevo Herald (Miami), and La Opinión (Los Angeles).
arrow Victor Curry

photo of victor curry He is the president of the Miami-Dade chapter of the NAACP, is the senior pastor of the New Birth Baptist Church, a predominantly African-American church. Curry is also the general manager of WMBM 1490AM, a radio station in Miami.
arrow Alfredo Duran

photo of alfredo duran He is the former president of the Bay of Pigs Veterans Association and says he was thrown out of the association because its members considered him a díaloguero, someone who wants to establish a dialogue with the Cuban government.

Duran is now a board member of the Cuban Committee for Democracy, an organization founded in 1993 by the moderate Cuban-American community in the U.S.

arrow Elena Freyre

photo of elena freyre Elena Freyre is the executive director of the Cuban Committee for Democracy, which was founded in 1993 by the moderate Cuban-American community. Freyre was born in Cuba and came to the United States in 1960 when she was 12 years old. She returned to Cuba for the first time in 1998, during Pope John Paul II's visit.
arrow Damian Fernandez

photo of damian fernandez He is a professor of international relations at Florida International University. His research work has focused on Cuban politics and international relations of Latin America.
arrow Maurice Ferre

photo of maurice ferre Originally from Puerto Rico, Ferre is a former mayor of Miami.
arrow Joe Garcia

photo of joe garcia He is the executive director of the Cuban American National Foundation (CANF), the strongest Cuban-American lobby and the driving force behind the embargo and isolationist policy toward Cuba.
arrow Sylvia Iriondo

photo of sylvia iriondo She is the head of Mothers and Women Against Repression in Cuba, which opposed sending Elian back to Cuba. Members of her group conducted daily prayer vigils near the house of Elian's relatives in Little Havana; some were present when federal agents took Elian in the pre-dawn raid.
arrow lisandro perez

photo of lisandro perez A professor at Florida International University, where he founded the Cuban Research Institute, he was born in Cuba and came to the United States with his parents in 1960 when he was 11 years old. He belongs to the "1.5 generation" of Cubans who arrived in the United States as children or adolescents.
arrow Carlos Saladrigas

photo of Carlos Saladrigas Carlos Saladrigas is a prominent Cuban-American businessman who tried to negotiate a resolution to the impasse between the U.S. government and Elian's family in Little Havana. Saladrigas is also one of the children who came to America in "Operation Pedro Pan."

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