A new Cuban dissident group called the Transition Support Center, or CAT, led by ex-political prisoner Hector Maseda, gathered in Havana to ask the island's government for "real" changes.

"We call on the government to guarantee that the changes taking place in this country are real, because the answers to our problems introduced up to now have been insufficient," Maseda, the CAT's chief adviser and analyst, said after the public launch of the opposition project on Friday.

Leaders of the group explained that this is a "multidisciplinary" collective made up of journalists, economists and independent union members like teachers, doctors, engineers and other professionals.

"We're a team, not a person, and we're not interested in leadership positions, we don't plan to work individually but to support, in every possible way, any opposition group that asks for our help," Maseda said.

The group, coordinated by Roberto Diaz, said that its work is to "get actively involved" in the processes of research, analysis, and putting into practice basic projects considered to have a "real chance" of making political and social changes on the Communist-ruled island.

They said they plan to "take back the spaces from which we have been barred for more than 54 years, and become part of each and every project for national development."

They also circulated two letters addressed to Cuban President Raul Castro urging the implementation of "wholesale markets" in each province of the country for private businesses, and the establishment of a monthly tax rate that is "steady and without ups and downs," to be paid by whoever is self-employed. EFE