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News > Cuba

Cuba Remembers Birthday of Combatant Vilma Espin

  • Fidel Castro (R), Vilma Espin (C), and Raul Castro (L). Cuba.

    Fidel Castro (R), Vilma Espin (C), and Raul Castro (L). Cuba. | Photo: Granma

Published 7 April 2021

The heroine fought against the Fulgencio Batista dictatorship and led the struggle for women's rights after the triumph of the Revolution in 1959.

On Wednesday, Cuba marked the 91st birthday of guerrilla fighter Vilma Espin, who battled alongside Fidel Castro during the revolutionary process. 


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"She devoted her whole life to fighting for women's emancipation when in Cuba they were discriminated against as human beings," Castro said about Vilma a few days after her death on June 18, 2007.

Espin founded the Federation of Cuban Women (FMC) in 1960 to incorporate women into the social and economic changes taking place in the country.

"The struggle for Cuban women's rights has been a Revolution within the Revolution. On that road there has been Vilma's imprint," Castro said in 1966.

She was one of the few women who graduated as a chemical engineer at Oriente University in Santiago de Cuba province in 1954.

After her graduation, the heroine entered in the clandestine fight against the U.S.-backed dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista (1952-1959).

The combatant's house served as a refuge when Batista's henchmen began to persecute and assassinate the young people who opposed his regime.

"Vilma's sacrifice was not in vain. Her example is more necessary today than ever," added Castro, who passed away on November 25, 2016.

Since 1959, the heroine was married to Raul Castro, brother of the leader of the Cuban Revolution. Her remains rest in Frank Pais Second Eastern Front's Mausoleum, in the Micara mountain, Holguin province.

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