For Cuba’s Ladies in White, Valentine’s Day saw no flowers or chocolates. Instead, 63 members of this all-female peaceful human rights organization were arrested and imprisoned by Castro State Security.
Valentine’s Day in Cuba: State Security imprisons 63 women for honoring Laura Pollan
Tonight, Angel Moya, a former prisoner of conscience and husband of Ladies in White spokeswoman Berta Soler tweeted: “63 Ladies in White arrested in 32 hours by DSE repressive forces, some Ladies in White were arrested several times.” Valentine’s Day in Cuba takes on its original meaning: the power of love resisting brutality and injustice in the worse of places.
Why did State Security engage in a crackdown against so many nonviolent women?
There are two fundamental reasons. First, they can get away with it. The international media has been mostly silent during this crackdown. They would prefer to report on who is able to obtain a passport and who is being denied one by the dictatorship as they pursue the Castro regime’s spin trying to sale cosmetic changes as real reforms. Secondly, the dictatorship fears the power of these women exercising nonviolent resistance and they still fear its founder the martyred Laura Pollán.
February 13, 2013 was the 65th anniversary of Lady in White founder Laura Pollán’s birth in Cuba. The Ladies in White are a non-violent human rights movement established in March of 2003 in the midst of a massive crackdown in which their loved ones were unjustly imprisoned for exercising their fundamental human rights. The first spokeswoman of the Ladies in White was Laura Pollán whose leadership forged a national movement that was also known and respected internationally. She died on October 14, 2011 following a mysterious illness and medical neglect.
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