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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - ARTISTS LEAVE FOR VIEQUES


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE/PLEASE ANNOUNCE PLEASE FORWARD

Contact: Annette D'Armata, OCTAAV: 512-442-5986

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LOURDES PEREZ TO BE JOINED BY PHOTOGRAPHER ALAN POGUE, RAULRSALINAS, 'INDIGO GIRL' EMILY SALIERS, OTHER ARTISTS IN HUMAN RIGHTS DELEGATIONS TO VIEQUES, PUERTO RICO
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PRESS CONFERENCE:
Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2000
3:00 p.m.
Front of Governor's Mansion 1010 Colorado, Austin, TX

SEND-OFF:
Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2000
7 p.m
La Pen~a Gallery, 227 Congress Ave., Austin, TX
FREE
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AUSTIN, TX - Puerto Rican vocalist/songwriter LOURDES PEREZ is heading up 2 human rights delegations to Vieques, Puerto Rico - the tiny island home of 10,000 people and a fragile ecosystem - the epicenter of a massive campaign of peaceful civil disobedience to end U.S. Navy occupation, bombing and weapons experimentation there. The U.S. colonized Puerto Rico in 1898 and appropriated 2/3 of the land of Vieques for use as a military base over 60 years ago. The death of civilian David Sanes Rodriguez in May 1999 by a stray bomb was the "last straw" in a long history of destruction and abuse, giving rise to an unprecedented unity among Puerto Ricans across the islands and abroad in their demand that Clinton issue an executive order removing the U.S. Navy from Vieques immediately. Thousands of demands for the complete removal of the military from the devastated island have come in from the Dalai Lama, Jesse Jackson and Nobel Peace Prize winner Rigoberta Menchu as well as medical, religious and veterans groups.

NOVEMBER 25 - 29
A diverse group of Austin and San Antonio based artists will be sent by OCTAAV (Organization of Concerned Texas Artists and Activists for Vieques) to join Perez for the first delegation:

ALAN POGUE - international photographer (U.S.)
ANNETTE D'ARMATA - music producer/artist (Lebanese/U.S.)
CORRIE SUBLETT-BERRIOS - poet/producer (Puerto Rican)
MICAELA DIAZ-SANCHEZ - actress (Chicana)
PHILIPPE VIEUX - jazz musician/composer (Haitian/U.S.)
RAULRSALINAS - poet/performer & elder (ChicanIndio)
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DECEMBER 7 - 8
Perez and D'Armata will return to Vieques with:

Atlanta-based, Grammy award-winning vocalist/musician/songwriter
EMILY SALIERS of the INDIGO GIRLS (U.S.)
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More information about the human rights/ecological crisis in Vieques and biographies of the delegates are accessible at: http://www.angelfire.com/journal/octaav

DELEGATION GOALS:

"1. LA VOZ/To offer performances and ceremony for peace at Campamento Justicia y Paz (in front of Camp Garcia) as a gift for those living 'in the trenches' of the struggle in Vieques.

2. DINERO/To deliver a cash collection from Texans in solidarity as tangible support for Viequense activists.

3. LAS MANOS/To offer our hands and individual skills to our Viequense sisters and brothers in their daily activities during our stay.

4. TESTIMONIOS/Multi-media documentation of encounters and interviews with Viequense fishermen, children, religious leaders, teachers, elders, women (photography, film, music and oral history recording, poetry, visual art, electronic media and journalism) drawing connections between Vieques and Indigenous, Chicano, African American and environmental racism struggles in Texas and the U.S. Multimedia reportback events TBA.

4. PUENTE/To generate publicity in the U.S. about the crisis in Vieques by sending a diverse delegation of people established in various disciplines."

CO-SPONSORED BY:
Veterans for Peace
Doug Zachary
Adrienne Barbee
Austin Latino/a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Organization (ALLGO)