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Yoani Sánchez arrives in Miami, visits shrine of Cuba's patron saint

Cuban blogger Yoani Sánchez touched down at Miami International Airport Thursday afternoon and reacted emotionally to reuniting with her family as well as arriving in the heartland of Cuban exiles.

Via her Twitter account, Sánchez said she would be spending the next few days with her sister Yunia, brother-in-law and niece before beginning a public agenda Monday.

One of her first stops Thursday was at La Ermita de la Caridad, the Coconut Grove shrine of Our Lady of Charity of El Cobre, Cuba’s patron saint. She met with Miami Archbishop Thomas Wenski, Rev. Richard Vigoa and Rev. Juan Rumín, rector of the bayside shrine. She also had a picture taken of herself sitting on the seawall at the shrine and dubbed it the “malecon of Miami.’’

Sánchez, who was denied permission to leave Cuba for a dozen years despite many invitations to travel abroad, finally received her passport and began an international tour in February that has already taken her to Latin America, Europe, New York and Washington.

Her outspoken style about daily life in Cuba and the plight of dissidents in her Generación Y blog has earned her well over 15 million hits a month and she has hundreds of thousands of followers on Twitter.

More from Mimi Whitefield here.

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