Another Weekend In Cuba, Repression As Usual: Regime Arrests at Least 70 Dissidents

By: Karina Martín - Jul 25, 2017, 5:15 pm
The majority of those detained were part of the Damas de Blanco (the Ladies in White) opposition group.  (Twitter)

EspañolThe Cuban regime saw to another repressive round of arrests this weekend, detaining at least 70 dissidents throughout Sunday, July 23.

According to local media, it marks the 109th consecutive Sunday in which the regime has forcefully repressed Cuban citizens’ rights to free speech, to demonstrate and to attend church.

Most of the detainees were part of the Ladies in White. The opposition group protests for the freedom of male relatives who have been made political prisoners for showing disapproval of the regime.

Group leader Berta Soler was one of at least 55 detainees in their group this weekend.

“Berta was beaten by a State Security agent,” said activist Aliuska Gomez. “She was beat up by four or five uniformed police officers who also punched her and pushed her,” he added.

Twenty-three of the Ladies in White that were detained are from Havana, while 22 were from Matanzas, nine were from Santiago de Cuba and one was from Guantánamo.

“I was arbitrarily detained in front of my house, taken to the Cotorro unit and released around at six or seven o’clock at night with a fine of 150 pesos,” Deisy Artiles, another members, said. “I asked the (officer) and he told me that the fine they gave me was from State Security for violating security.”

Artiles also complained that she had been given multiple, similar fines “for only speaking up for freedom of political prisoners, respect for human rights, and freedom for the people of Cuba.”

Due to the increasing violence it faces, the opposition group has asked Pope Francisco to intervene on the Castro dictatorship’s actions, but they have thus far not received a reply.

Sources: Cubanet; Martí Noticias.

Karina Martín Karina Martín

Karina Martín is a Venezuelan reporter with the PanAm Post based in Valencia. She holds a bachelor's degree in Modern Languages from the Arturo Michelena University.