- Associated Press - Tuesday, August 30, 2011

HAVANA (AP) - Cuban singer-songwriter Pablo Milanes has harshly criticized government-backed harassment of the Ladies in White dissident group in his country.

The women are the wives and mothers of former political prisoners and Milanes says the way they are treated inspires feelings of “shame” and “indignation.” He adds that he does not agree with the women’s opinions about the Cuban government, but he feels “solidarity” with their pain.

The comments come in an open letter published Tuesday by Miami’s El Nuevo Herald newspaper.

The Ladies in White hold weekly protest marches in Cuba and are often met by rowdy, pro-government crowds who shout insults and obscenities at them.

Milanes calls such treatment “vile” and “cowardly.”

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