The San Juan Star


The Associated Press

(06/07/98, Copyright © 1998 The San Juan Star)

PONCE - The U.S. government's decision to revoke Juan Mari Brás renunciation of U.S. citizenship clearly shows that Puerto Rico is as much a colony today as it was before Commonwealth was established, said Puerto Rican Independence Party President Rubén Berrios on Saturday.

"This experiment by Mari Brás' has served to show that Puerto Rico is as much as colony of the United States today as before the establishment of commonwealth and that is you want Puerto Rican citizenship you have to fight for the independence of Puerto Rico", the senator said.

Berríos said he wasn't surprised by the about face of the U.S. Department of State in the Mari Brás case because federal law is clear on the issue. He said be is against such law but said that's the current political reality and the only way to have Puerto Rican citizenship is by establishing an independent republic.

"I'm not disillusioned by the decision of the U.S. Department of State, nor am I unmoved. It's just that I always thought That's what would happen", he said. "American law is the one that rules here I would prefer that it wouldn't be so but American law is what the Americans say. "They're the ones who have the last say and this is what they've said, that Puerto Rico is a colony."

Berríos said the PIP doesn't recommend that people renounce their U.S. citizenship and that they believe it could be preserved in a Puerto Rican republic.

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