HAVANA, Jun 25 (IPS) - Renowned for her work for the rights of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transvestite and transgender people, Mariela Castro advocates a fairer, more inclusive, and above all more participatory socialism in Cuba. Castro is head of the National Sex Education Centre (CENESEX) and the main sponsor of a mid-2008 resolution that approved sex change operations within the Cuban state health system. Participation could be the key feature of socialism in the 21st century, said the 46-year-old expert, the daughter of Cuban President Raúl Castro and Vilma Espín, a campaigner for the rights of women and sexual minorities and a historic leader of the Cuban revolution, who died in 2007.
In this interview with IPS, Castro, who on May 16 led the first street conga dance against homophobia in the history of this Caribbean island nation, talks about the experiences that marked her life and made her what she is today, about socialist participation and her hopes for a Cuba free of the U.S. embargo.
D. Acosta interviews MARIELA CASTRO, Cuban activist for sexual diversity rights
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