by MATT PEPPE
The Puerto Rican nationalist leader was "charged him with conspiracy to commit sedition, the same political charge used by the apartheid South African government to convict Nelson Mandela two decades earlier. López has now served seven more years in prison than Mandela did before being freed and becoming South Africa’s first post-apartheid President."
Two and a half months ago, asked by award-winning playwright Lin-Manuel Mirandaabout imprisoned Puerto Rican nationalist Oscar López Rivera – whose only crime, according to Nobel Peace Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu, is “conspiracy to free his people from the shackles of imperial justice” – President Barack Obama told the Hamilton creator that he “had [the case] on his desk.” Miranda, whose parents hail from Puerto Rico, used his invitation to the White House to bring up the issue of López Rivera’s continued incarceration, which is of tremendous importance to Puerto Ricans. Both on the island and in the diaspora, freedom for the 73-year-old political prisoner enjoys overwhelming popular support and has united people across the political spectrum.
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