Four Cubans experience “change” in Cuba
Luis Enrique Labrador

More “change” is coming to Cuba as four members of Cuba’s opposition must “change” their mailing address from their homes to one of Castro’s gulags. The members of the opposition group “The Force of Truth” have been sentenced to prison for the crime of passing out pro-democracy leaflets in a public square. In Castro’s Cuba, disseminating any information or expressing any point of view that is not in complete support of the tyrannical dictatorship is a crime punishable by incarceration.

Cuban dissidents get jail time for anti-gov’t flyers

Havana – Four Cuban dissidents were sentenced Tuesday to prison terms for “aggravated defiance” by scattering anti-government flyers on a public square, family members told Efe.

Luis Enrique Labrador, 33; David Piloto, 40; and Walfrido Rodriguez, 42, were each sentenced to five years in prison, while 23-year-old Yordani Martinez received a three-year sentence.

The four men were arrested in January after they scattered flyers with slogans such as “Down with the Castro dictatorship” and “Freedom for the political prisoners” in Havana’s Plaza of the Revolution and on a street corner in the El Cerro neighborhood.

The men are all activists with the opposition group The Force of Truth.

During the trial “the greatest emphasis was placed on the charge of defiance due to the content of the proclamations, considering them to be a lack of respect for the country’s top authorities,” according to the spokesman for the Cuban Commission on Human Rights and National Reconciliation, Elizardo Sanchez.

Opposition sources and relatives told Efe that at the door to the courtroom an incident occurred when relatives of the accused protested the sentences imposed and were supported by about a dozen dissidents who had stationed themselves there when the trial began.

Sanchez said that a group of about 60 pro-government demonstrators hurled insults at the dissidents, among whom were several former political prisoners.

“The Commission deems that the sentences imposed are extremely disproportionate because the four punished men are innocent and acted within the limits of freedom of expression,” Sanchez commented.

“It’s well-known that every day in other places in the world there are hundreds and thousands of people protesting against the governments and they don’t imprison them for that,” he added.

The human rights activist said that the four men should appeal to Cuba’s Supreme Court, adding that he believed that “they could qualify to be adopted as ‘prisoners of conscience’ by Amnesty International.”

One positive “change” that is occurring in Cuba is the increase in public demonstrations against the dictatorship by dissidents and members of the opposition. In the following video taken outside the courtroom where these four activists were unjustly sentenced to prison, you can see how activists demonstrated against the dictatorship and clashed with the regime-led mobs sent to counter them.