While foreign journalists in communist Cuba are sipping mojitos and smoking cigars, the island’s peaceful opposition is quietly being arrested, put on trial, and imprisoned by the Castro dictatorship.
Human rights reports warns of a ‘new version of the Black Spring’ in Cuba
With dozens of opposition members imprisoned, among those waiting to be sentenced and those convicted for political crimes, in addition to the weeks-long forced “hospitalization” of artist Luis Manuel OItero Alcantara, the month of May saw a marked increase of repression, according to the Cuban Center of Human Rights (CCDH).
“The month of May brought not only flowers, but a new version of the Black Spring,” said the organization’s coordinator, opposition leader Martha Beatriz Roque Cabello, in the report.
In addition to the increase in the number of opposition members who are awaiting trial, the report highlights there are “13 new political prisoners, which is the largest single increase since March of 2003.”
Those imprisoned are: Delvis Sardiñas Mora, Yuisán Cancio Vera, Luis Ángel Cuza Alfonso, Thais Mailén Franco Benítez, Esteban Lázaro Rodríguez Lopez, Inty Soto Romero, Orestes Varona Medina, Yeilis Torres Cruz, Roberto Perdomo Fuentes, Maykel Castillo Pérez (Osorbo), Carlos Alberto Álvarez Rojas, Waldo Hernández Batista, and Cándido Chacón Puñales.
The report also includes the case of one family of four sentenced to one year of prison for alleged threats, 24 imprisoned and awaiting trial, 8 who have been tried and are currently appealing their convictions, and 6 activists already sentenced and imprisoned who are awaiting new trials.
“Prosecuting members of the opposition has became the latest tactic used by the dictatorship to keep the number of people who don’t support the system to a minimum. It doesn’t matter how well known a person put on trial may be, the goal is to send them to trial and keep them behind bars. In particular they are targeting those involved with the Homeland and Life song because of the popularity it has achieved,” said Roque Cabello.
Continue reading (in Spanish) HERE.