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"Pieces of the Island"-An English Translation
Category Archives: Yaité Diosnelly Cruz Sosa
August 29, 2013Posted by on
Each Thursday in the central region of Cuba women dressed in black march to their nearest church, in a sign of honor and respect to compatriots who have lost their lives in the struggle for establishing a country free from dictatorships. Many times the women are beat, arrested or deported, but each week they walk. They are the members of the Rosa Parks Movement for Civil Rights, named so in honor of the American civil rights hero.
The women of the Movement are mainly active in the provinces of Villa Clara, Ciego de Avila and Camaguey. They dress in black “as a sign of mourning“, according to the group’s president, Yris Tamara Perez Aguilera, originally from Sancti Spiritus and who has been known as one of the female leaders of the Cuban opposition for some years now after she begun her activities demanding the release of her husband, former political prisoner Jorge Luis Garcia Perez ‘Antunez’, who spent 17 years in the communist gulags for demanding change and freedom in the 90′s.
But why do these women mourn?
“Because we are honoring the many victims of the Castro tyranny“, explained Perez Aguilera, who explains that she is referring to the martyrs of all generations since 1959, “like Pedro Luis Boitel, Mario Chanes de Arma, Mario Manuel de la Pena, Orlando Zapata Tamayo, Laura Pollan Toledo, Harold Cepero, Oswaldo Paya“… but she assures that “the list continues“.
Among the mentioned names are members of the pro-freedom Resistance from different stages in history, like Pedro Luis Boitel from the 70′s, Mario Manuel de la Pena (a young Cuban-American member of Brothers to the Rescue) from the 90′s, as well as more recent cases such as Zapata Tamayo, Pollan and Paya. On occasions, the marches have paid tribute to freedom fighters who died in combat or were executed in the Escambray mountains in the 60′s. They have also remembered rafters who have fled the island in search of freedom and have perished.
“We do this to not forget those heroes who fought for the freedom and democracy of Cuba“, says Yris.
Meanwhile, the political police and other repressive factions of the dictatorship lash out against these female activists each Thursday through different methods. At one point in time, each of the women would be arrested but now Perez explains that the agents have employed a new method, “arresting some” and “others not” in an attempt to try and create divisions among the group, an approach which has not yielded positive results for the regime.
“Some of us always manage to make it to church where we participate in Mass in honor of the martyrs, and also, every time one of our activists are left abandoned in some desolate field, they always return and continue the activity“, assures the dissident, a resident of Placetas, Villa Clara. Other cities where weekly marches are reported are Santa Clara, Grua Nueva and Camaguey.
The Rosa Parks Movement also carries out other civil disobedience demonstrations, such as sit-ins, public debates and protest marches. The goal of these activities is to demand the liberation of all political prisoners as well as to demand better social and living conditions for the everyday population.
And it is precisely because of all these Cubans who suffer under the reprisals of the communist regime or who have lost their lives that this female organization “will continue” with their actions, affirms Perez Aguilera.
Here are some declarations about the group made by Yris to this blog (in Spanish):
This past 28th of August, in honor of Martin Luther King’s legacy in the field of civil rights, exiled journalist, blogger and activist Luis Felipe Rojas interviewed Yris Tamara Perez, Damaris Moya and Yaite Cruz Sosa, all members of the Movement, in his program “Contacto Cuba”, transmited to the island through Radio Marti. Take a listen to the show here.
April 27, 2013Posted by on
Cuban authorities have only responded to this question with more violence.
Yris Tamara Pérez Aguilera, president of the Rosa Parks Movement for Civil Rights, a pro-freedom group made up by various women who dress in black and carry out peaceful marches and acts of civil disobedience, continues to be victim of beatings at the hands of Cuban political police agents, even when she is trying to take care of personal chores which have absolutely nothing to do with a political demonstration.
Perez was left unconscious after a beat down by the police this past March in the city of Santa Clara. She suffered numerous health complications after that, including a concussion and serious head pains. Meanwhile, all the hospitals of the mentioned city as well as her city of residence- Placetas- refused to let her in, all because State Security had ordered so, due to her ideology.
Her health situation was so serious that her father passed away a few days later and, because she was bed-ridden and in so much pain, she could not even go to his funeral and bid him farewell for the last time, something which has been extremely difficult for her.
This 25th of April, Yris was once against arrested and beat, this time by a police official known as Akaema. The activist was on her way to the Rafael Pharmacy of Placetas to buy some medications for her high blood pressure. She was accompanied by two other activists- Yaite Cruz Sosa and Xiomara Martin Jimenez- but they were not carrying out a protest, march, or any dissident activity. The three were arrested.
“Agent Akaema savagely beat me on the head… I have a neck brace and she hit me there on purpose, shaking my head all over the place”, recounts Yris Tamara in an audio published in the YouTube channel of her husband, well known former political prisoner and dissident leader Jorge Luis Garcia Perez ‘Antunez‘.
The three women were shoved into police vehicles, kept for a brief period of time in a police unit, and later were left abandoned in desolate and abandoned spots, respectively. They had to walk back some blocks to get to their homes.
Politically-driven assassinations in Cuba have different forms. In many cases, the regime takes away all food of political prisoners, while other times they beat them while they are on hunger strike, already weakened to begin with. Other activists are beat in dawn hours, left to die out on a street. ”Accidents” have also been organized, leading to the death of those who defend freedom.
In the case of Yris Tamara Perez, everything points to the fact that the Cuban regime does not want her to receive medical attention, which she desperately needs due to all the beatings their agents have given her.
Regardless, the dissident leader says that she feels she is “a free citizen”.
And, precisely with that same inherent freedom she feels, she declares that “I will go back out again to the street, I am not going to send someone to get my medicines for me, because that is my right, and they are violating my rights”, expressed Perez.
For more information from Cuba, contact:
Yris Tamara Perez Aguilera- Cell Phone- +52-417-749 / Twitter: @YrisCuba
October 14, 2012Posted by on
This Sunday 14th of October, the year anniversary of the death of Laura Pollan, leader of the Ladies in White, operations unleashed by the police forces of the Cuban regime produced numerous arrests throughout the island, but such actions were not able to impede the activities carried out in honor of Pollan.
A wide range of tributes were reported in the country since Berta Soler, representative of the Ladies in White, announced a week of activities last October 7th.
For example, that same day women carried out their traditional march along Havana’s 5th Avenue and screamed slogans like “Laura Pollan Lives“, while dissident Martha Beatriz Roque Cabello managed to arrange a daily Mass throughout the week in the San Juan Bosco Church in Havana in memory of the fallen leader of the Ladies in White. In the eastern town of Manzanillo, where Laura was born, various human rights activists met at the cemetery where part of her ashes remain and carried out a prayer vigil and deposited several white gladiolus flowers, the symbol of the peaceful struggle of the Ladies in White.
The actions continued all week in other regions: Holguin, Baracoa, Bayamo, Matanzas, Santa Clara, and Pinar del Rio, among others.
On Saturday the 13th, the Ladies in White held a meeting in their headquarters, situated in Pollan’s home on Neptuno Street, in Havana. Many of these women were arrested or kept from leaving their homes so that they not arrive to the encounter, but 18 of them were able to carry out the activity.
Marta Díaz Rondon, a Lady in White from the Eastern municipality of Banes, in Holguin province, was one of the women who were present. Diaz Rondon had to leave days before in order to arrive to the capital, where she managed to surpass numerous police cordons and arrive to the group’s headquarters.
Diaz says that the activity was carried out in an atmosphere of peace in the house, as the women “lit candles in front of pictures of Laura Pollan and deposited various flowers”. Meanwhile, outside the atmosphere was not the same. The regime organized mobs around the home which consisted of state police agents in civilian clothing and various pre-university students and even dancers who tried to make the act of repudiation seem like a simple “celebration” before the eyes of the international media.
Not only did the mobs blast pro-government music, but their members also shouted insults and obscene words at the women. The Ladies in White simply responded by singing the national anthem and shouting such slogans like “Laura Pollan Lives” and “Free Cuba“.
Nearby streets were closed off by the police and all traffic was re-routed to keep any other activists from arriving to the encounter.
On the following day- Sunday the 14th- a number of women throughout the country were reported as detained.
In the case of Sara Marta Fonseca Quevedo, the renown dissident recounted that her home was surrounded by political police agents since 1 AM to keep her from leaving her house and joining the peaceful march to the Santa Rita Catholic Church. Neighbors told her that uniformed officials were keeping a tight vigilance over all the corners of the Rio Verde neighborhood of Boyeros, Havana, where her home is located.
“In addition, the agents had the objective of keeping any other dissident from arriving to my house to pay our own tribute to that grand leader that was Laura Pollan Toledo“, said Fonseca.
Meanwhile, the State Security agents Sanper and Alejandro ‘visited’ the headquarter of the group and threatened the women, telling Berta Soler that the Ladies in White could not march. However, Soler and Laura Labrada Pollan (Laura’s daughter) told the agents that they would not accept their instructions and they went out anyway and carried out their march with 48 women. They were accompanied also by other figures of the opposition like Hector Maceda (former prisoner and husband of Pollan), Ofelia Acevedo (widow of Oswaldo Paya), Antonio Rodiles, Hugo Damian Prieto and former political prisoners Ivan Hernandez Carrillo and Arnaldo Ramos.
Hernandez Carrillo was reporting from the scene of the activities through his Twitter account: @ivanlibre.
A group of women from Santiago de Cuba managed to surpass numerous police cordons and arrive to the Santa Rita church, joining the group of more than 40 women who had already arrived. Meanwhile, back in Santiago, another 30 women made it to the El Cobre Shrine.
In the central city of Santa Clara, 6 women from the Rosa Parks Movement for Civil Rights were violently arrested when they were showing solidarity with the Ladies in White by trying to assist Mass in La Pastora Church. The detainees were Idania Yánez Conteras, Damaris Moya Portieles, Yaite Cruz Sosa, Ana Rosa Alfonso, Xiomara Martin Jiménez and Yanisbel Valido Pérez.
Idania Yanez explains that the women were dressed in white- as a form of solidarity, as these women always wear black during their protests- and that they were dragged off the bus they were aboard while they were “beaten“.
“State Security official Yunier Monteagudo Reina and other agents intercepted the bus we were traveling and started to physically assault us“, detailed Yanez, “Yunier hit Damaris Moya in the face and broke her lips… they dragged us throughout the floor, they shoved us and then they detained us and took us to the local police unit“.
The activists from the Rosa Parks Movement started to shout slogans against the government and others in honor of Laura Pollan while they were being assaulted.
Yanez said that at no point did the everyday people demonstrate hate towards them. Instead, they looked at the events in horror and demonstrated their solidarity with the protestors.
Other activists were arrested as was the case of Angel Moya Acosta and Raul Borges, among many others, but the internal opposition achieved their objective: honoring Laura Pollan, that Lady who made the Cuban regime tremble with just a flower, demanding peace, freedom and justice.
August 18, 2012Posted by on
The dissident leader suffered strong chest and head pains during his arrest but was denied medical assistance in police unit and local Placetas Hospital. Meanwhile, activist Atruro Conde Zamora was threatened by police agents that they would fabricate him a crime in order to disappear him.
At around 9 AM on the morning of Friday, August 17th, the renown dissident Jorge Luis Garcia Perez “Antunez” was arrested by the political police along with Arturo Conde Zamora, also an activist, when they were both on their way to carry out a civic demonstration in front of a Jose Marti monument in the city of Placetas, Villa Clara. According to Antunez, the activity was going to be in condemnation of the deaths of Oswaldo Paya Sardinas and Harold Cepero Escalante, as well as other dissidents like Orlando Zapata Tamayo, Wilman Villar Mendoza, Juan Wilfredo Soto Garcia, and Laura Pollan.
He also explained that other members of the Resistance had plans to join the protest. “Blas Fortun Martinez, Yris Tamara Perez Aguilera, Xiomara Martinez Jimenez, Donaida Perez Paceiros and Yaite Cruz Sosa all had plans to meet up with us to join the activity“, said Antunez, but it was not possible at that moment.
Antunez explained that the arrest was violent and both men were taken to the Placetas Police Unit where they were confined to pestilent cells for 24 hours. During the detention, Antunez started to suffer “strong pains in the chest, head, and on the right eye“. The activist acquired many health issues during the 17 year prison term he was sentenced to in the 90′s for carrying out a peaceful demonstration against the Cuban regime. When his brother- Loreto Hernandez Garcia- went to the police unit at around 11 PM and tried to give him medicines for the pains he was suffering, the authorities flat out told him that this was not allowed. The activist did not receive medical attention during his time in the cell.
While the activists- both who are members of the Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Resistance Front- remained detained, the group of dissidents which was going to initially join the protest that morning decided to carry out their own demonstration outside the home of Antunez. His wife Yris Tamara Perez Aguilera, also a leading dissident and president of the Rosa Parks Movement for Civil Rights, explained to various news sources like “Radio Republica” and “Radio Marti” that the group took to the streets and started to shout slogans like “Water, food, the people are dying”, “Freedom for Antunez and Conde Zamora”, and “Towards the National Strike”. These activities were closely watched by State Security agents but no arrests were reported.
Antunez also denounced that Arturo Conde Zamora received threats and insults during his time detained. “One of the officials told him: ‘Nigger, if you do not get out of the opposition we are going to fabricate a common crime for you and take you out of circulation’“. These tactics are common in Cuba, where countless dissidents have been taken to prison or have been fined for heavy sums for crimes they have never committed.
At around 9 AM of Saturday, Agusut 18th, Arturo Conde and Antunez were released. In the case of the latter, he was still suffering strong chest pains, so he tried to get checked at the Placetas Hospital, but once he arrived there he was told that they could not tend to him under the excuse that there were not enough doctors present.
Once Antunez returned to his home in Placetas he noticed that the cordons of police agents were still there, watching over all of his actions. Although he still feels some chest pains, Antunez- the secretary general of the Orlando Zapata National Resistance Front- affirmed that he feels “more firm and decided than ever” of his position: that he will “not shut up, and not leave Cuba“.
For more information from Cuba:
Jorge Luis García Pérez ‘Antúnez’- Cell Phone: +5352-731-656 // Twitter: @antunezcuba
June 2, 2012Posted by on
As part of the “March Against Impunity”, the female activists from the Rosa Parks Movement for Civil Rights carry out civic activities in Cuba during the first day of each month. This June 1st, 2012 was marked by a nonviolent sit-in by three activists from the mentioned group- Donaida Perez Paceiro, Yaite Cruz Sosa, and Dora Correa- in the city of Placetas, Villa Clara.
The woman carried out the protest on 7th Street South, in front of a number of public institutions, during the morning hours. They began to shout various slogans, not only against the Cuban regime but also demanding the freedom of all political prisoners, as well as other messages such as “down with the forced evictions”, “down with the high price of electricity”, and “down with hunger”. In declarations made on the Rosa Parks Movement’s blog, Donaida Perez explained that the women were also showing solidarity woth Damaris Moya Portieles, another activist from the group who is currently facing a difficult situation as a police official threatened to rape her 5 year old daughter.
In a matter of minutes, agents at the service of the dictatorship arrived on the scene and began to aggressively arrest the demonstrators. The former political prisoner Jorge Luis Garcia Perez Antunez managed to capture these images on his cell phone and was able to publish them on his Twitter account. (These photos were also published on the Rosa Park Movement’s blog).
The police agents dragged the women, shoved them in police vehicles, and drove them off to unknown locations.
Peaceful sit-ins are one of the most popular methods among international civic movements. They have been successfully applied around the world against dictatorships or corrupt systems. In the United States, during the 1950′s and 60′s, these methods were frequently used by black Americans who suffered under a system of discrimination and racism. Under the direction of activists such as Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks, these demonstrators achieved their objectives despite constant violence. Currently in Cuba, human rights activists not only carry out sit-ins, but also hunger strikes, pots and pans protests, vigils, public marches, as well as the distribution of pamphlets with pro-freedom messages and the hanging of anti-government signs in public places. Though in the majority of cases the activists are arrested, the demonstrations achieve the objective of showing the local population how they are being mistreated just for demanding rights for an entire nation.
The women of the Rosa Parks Movement are an example of this civic struggle which is being carried out throughout the entire island by diverse groups who fight for a free future.
For more information from Cuba:
Yris Tamara Aguilera (president of the Rosa Parks Mov.)- +5352-417-749 // Twitter: @yrisCuba
March 19, 2012Posted by on
March was yet another month which began with the accustomed peaceful protest carried out by the women of the Rosa Parks Movement for Civil Rights. This time, the activity took place in front of the Communist Party headquarters in the town of Santa Clara. The video of the protest was published recently and you can see how Yris Tamara Aguilera, Yaite Cruz Sosa, Donaida Pérez Paseiros and Yaimara Reyes Mesa are rapidly harassed, dragged, and beaten by functionaries of the communist headquarters. In the case of Yris Tamara Aguilera, it can be seen how she sits down on the floor as a sign of non-cooperation. A functionary starts to yell at Yris, demanding that she get up from the street. The women were simply demanding freedom and an end to the impunity excercised by the regime, as occurs every first day of each month. The demonstration culminated in a violent arrest. See the video:
On Sunday, March 11th, dissident Jorge Luis Garcia Antunez was arbitrarily arrested as he was leaving his home in Placetas. He was kept in a dungeon until Wednesday the 14th despite the fact that he was suffering from serious chest pains. His wife, Yris Tamara Aguilera, and the same activists which participated in the march on video, were also arrested during afternoon hours of Wednesday the 14th. In the case of Yris Tamara, she was once again arrested on the morning of Thursday, March 15th, when she was on her way to a medical center to tend to the wounds she had received during her previous time in jail. After a public call from various activists who declared that they would “take to the streets if Yris was not liberated”, the regime decided to release the activist. The repression against these men and women is constant, but so too is their perseverance.
Placetas: 5 Activists are Still Detained, Among them prominent dissident Antunez, with Health Complications
March 14, 2012Posted by on
Jorge Luis Garcia Antunez, opposition activist and national secretary of the Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Resistance Front, is still arrested in a police unit of Placetas (a town of central Cuba) since the night of Sunday, March 11th, when he was walking out of his house and towards the corner of his block. The arrest was reported, almost instantly, by his wife Yris Tamara Aguilera who was not at the house at that moment. Aguilera published a Twitter message where she explained that a witness of the arrest had informed her that when they were detaining Antunez they told him it was “under orders from the high command from Havana”. Also arrested were dissidents Eriberto Liranza Romero and Rene Rouco Machin in Havana.
On the following day, Romero and Machin were released but Antunez remained arrested. A detainee which was released hours after Antunez was taken to his cell told Yris that her husband was experiencing “many chest pains and was vomiting”, considering that he suffers from various health complications which he acquired from his 17 years in prison for his political activism. A few minutes after receiving this news, Yris decided to head out towards the police unit along with activists Donaida Perez Paseiros, Yaimara Reyes Mesa, and Yaite Sosa, all members of the Rosa Parks Movement for Civil Rights. There, the 4 women started to demand the liberation of Antunez. The protest continued until an official stepped out of the unit and told the women that Antunez would be released on the following day, which did not happen. For this reason, the women once again marched to the police unit at 9 AM on Tuesday. In this occassion, Yaimara Reyes could not go, but instead, Xiomara Martin Jimenez was present.
When the 4 women arrived at the unit, they once again started their civic protest. In just minutes, a number of officials started to harass them, and eventually started to beat them, drag them, and in the end, detain them. According to Dora Lara, an elderly activists from the Rosa Parks Movement who lives across the street from the police unit, she heard shouts of “Down with Fidel” from her home. In addition, Lara affirms that she was able to witness the violent beating carried out against the activists.
On the night of that same Tuesday, various activists from the Orlando Zapata Tamayo Resistance Front declared that if the dissidents were not released by Wednesday at 12 pm, they would take to the streets in protest against their arbitrary arrest.
Activists in diverse parts of the island have expressed concern for the fate of the detainees, especially Antunez who, according to various sources, continues to suffer from strong chest pains. For this reason, we demand the immediate liberation of the 5 human rights activists.
For more information, follow the Twitter account of Yris Tamara Aguilera (@YrisCuba), which is currently being administered by the exiled sister of Antunez, Bertha Antunez. There is also information available in the Twitter account of the Cuban Democratic Directorate (@DirectorioCuba).
Despite the Sexual Harassment and the Physical Aggressions, the Women of the Rosa Parks Movement Will Continue Marching
March 5, 2012Posted by on
Every first day of the month has already started to become synonymous with acts of Resistance by the activists from the Rosa Parks Movement for Civil Rights. This past March 1st, these Cubans once again took to the streets, but this time in different areas of the island.
In Banes, the Lady in White and Vice-President of the Rosa Parks Movement, Marta Diaz Rondon, led a group of other women to the Northern Cemetery in that same town where the remains of activist Marta Cecilia Perez Duconger lay. The dissidents decided to pay tribute to this Cuban on this specific date because she was one of the founders of the Rosa Parks Movement. Although they were able to carry out their tribute, a constant surveillance by the political police surrounded the women. In Matanzas, dissident Leticia Ramos, along with other activists, also took to the street and carried out a protest march.
However, without a doubt the worst violence occurred in Placetas, where a group of women from the Rosa Parks Movement, among them their president Yris Tamara Aguilera, surprised the regime functionaries in that area and stood outside the headquarters of the Municipal Headquarters of the Communist Party demanding freedom for the political prisoners Yazmin Conyedo and Yusmany Alvarez, an end to forced evictions, and, in sum, freedom for Cuba. Other women who participated were Donaida Pérez Paseiro, Yaite Cruz Sosa and Dora Pérez Correa. According to testimonies of these same women, many everyday Cubans displayed support and solidarity with them.
In just instants, a mob made up of State Security agents surrounded the women and quickly and violently arrested Blas Fortun Martinez, a dissident from the Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Resistance Front who was reporting from the scene of the protest. This arrest was carried out by agent Idel Gonzalez Morfi, best known as ‘Railroad Nail’. Meanwhile, and despite the aggressions, the women kept firm and shouted “freedom” and “the streets belong to the people“.
The communist mobs did not take long to physically assault the demonstrators. In this case, the activists denounce that the women from State Security who work in the Communist Headquarters began to scratch them and even bite them. In addition, the functionaries began to take off their shoes and use them to beat the female dissidents. According to Donaida Perez, numerous passer-bys defended the dissidents, standing in between them and their aggressors.
After this display of violence, the women from the Rosa Parks Movement decided to head back to one of their homes- that of Dora Perez, which is located literally across the street from the Communist Headquarters. But State Security was not satisfied with beating them and harassing them for just a short while. Considering that the march was completely spontaneous, the agents could only manage to gather a small group of women from State Security during the initial violence. When some time had passed, the functionaries organized a larger repressive operation against the women. A number of agents surrounded the home of Dora Perez and started to hurl rocks and shout offensive slogans. Various soldiers broke into the home and beat all those inside, taking them detained, even those who did not participate in the protest, like Yaimara Reyes Mesa and Xiomara Martin Jiménez. Also, the daughter of Dora Perez, who is not even a public dissident, was beaten and arrested.
In the following audio, recorded and provided by the Cuban Democratic Directorate (in Spanish), one can hear the moment when the arrests occurred, as the dissidents are bravely confronting their oppressors and shouting “No more Castros“, “Long live Democracy“, and “freedom for the Cuban people“, among other slogans:
All the women inside the house were arrested and the soldiers even left the door of the house wide open. Yris Aguilera, Dora Perez, and Yaimara Reyes were taken to the Instructional Police Headquarters (UPOC) in Santa Clara. When news of this spread, on the next day members of the Central Opposition Coalition directed themselves to that unit, demanding the immediate liberation of the activists.
The women of the Rosa Parks Movement were released during the afternoon hours of March 3rd. But the violence did not stop there. In the case of Yris Tamara Aguilera, she was beat inside the police vehicle which was headed to leave her back at her house in Placetas. The official known as Yuniel Monteagudo Reina was the aggressor, and he is also forcefully lowered Yris’s pants, sexually harassing her. Yris protested and did not let him get any closer to her, despite his physical strength. In declarations made just minutes after this abuse, Yris denounced that agent Yuniel told her “I’m gonna tear off the pants of this nigger and I am going to get on top of her”. This was also strongly denounced by her husband, the well-known activist for human rights and opposition leader, Jorge Luis Garcia ‘Antunez’.
These women have affirmed that despite the increased violence against them every first day of the month (and any other day they voice their opinions), they will continue demonstrating in defense of human rights, against government impunity, state violence, and, in sum, the Castro dictatorship.
This information was based on Twitter messages published by the Cuban Democratic Directorate. For more information follow @DirectorioCuba.
And from Cuba: Yris Tamara Aguilera – Cell: 011-5352- 417-749, Twitter: @YrisCuba / Jorge Luis García Pérez Antúnez – Cell: 011-5352- 731-656, Twitter: @AntunezCuba
February 28, 2012Posted by on
In honor of Orlando Zapata Tamayo on the second anniversary of his assassination this past February 23rd, activists from the Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Civic Resistance and Civil Disobedience Front in Placetas took to the street to carry out a civic march. This march was rapidly repressed by political police agents.
As a display of civil disobedience, the demonstrators- among them Jorge Luis Garcia Perez Antunez- sat on the floor when they saw their oppressors running towards them. The agents handcuffed, pushed, and arrested the activists, later shoving them in a bus to take them detained. The arrested dissidents were Yaimara Reyes Mesa, Yaité Cruz Sosa, Fautino Calá, Santos Fernández, Dinel Millet Jiménez y Antúnez, all of which began to shout slogans such as “freedom for Cuba” and “long live human rights”.
Here is the video:
February 2, 2012Posted by on
Via the blog of Antunez- “I will not shut up, I will not leave”: Female dissidents from the Rosa Parks Movement for Civil Rights who had plans to march through the streets of Santa Clara today, February 1st, were brutally beaten and arrested by State Security agents during their peaceful protest against impunity.
Idania Yánez Contreras, member of the Rosa Parks Movement, was able to provide an audio, via telephone, of the moment she and other women were going out to protest in the street. Towards the middle of the audio, once can hear the women being violently arrested.
Below is the audio (in spanish) followed by a translated transcription:
Moment of March for Freedom and Against Impunity in Santa Clara, and audio of Brutal Arrests
febrero 1, 2012 por antunezcuba
Voice of Idania Yanez Contreras, the president of the Central Opposition Coalition and member of the Rosa Parks Movement for Civil Rights. February 1st, 2012.
“Here we are in the headquarters of the Central Opposition Coalition, located in Prolongacion of Marta Abreu 93rd A e/B and C in the Virginia neighborhood, in the city of Santa Clara. This march takes place every 1st day of each month. Right now, we are surrounded by a large number of State Security officials and police agents. We dedicated the past march to demand the freedom of Ivonne Malleza Galano and her husband Ignacio Martinez, and we are dedicating this one to demand the freedom of Yazmin Conlledo Riveron and her husband Yusmani Rafael Alvarez Esmoris, who are both currently unjustly jailed since January 8th, and being accused of false charges. But we are also taking advantage of the occasion to celebrate the 99th birthday of the person who we have named our movement after- Rosa Parks.
From the municipality of Placetas, these are the women participating today: Xiomara Martín Jiménez, Yris Tamara Pérez Aguilera, Yaité Diosnelly Cruz Sosa
From Santa Clara: Yanisbel Valido Pérez, Damaris Moya Portieles, María del Carmen Martínez López and myself, Idania Yánes Contreras.
We are carrying a blanket with the phrases “March for freedom and against impunity”, “Freedom for Yazmin Conlledo and Yusmari Alvarez, unjustly imprisoned”, “Rosa Parks Movement”, and “Long Live Human Rights”.
Right now we are walking out of the house, we know that we are not going to be able to walk very far, they are already there…they are looking at us and well, we are starting our march.
Freedom for Yazmin Conlledo Riveron and Yusmani Rafael Alvarez Esmoris!
Long Live Human Rights!
Down with Repression! Down!
They are arresting us!…
(Loud and disturbing screams of pain and of protest, voices of different women)
Take your hands off of my breasts, you murderer, take your hands off my breasts, murderer, human rights violator. Do not hit me, you murderer, stop hitting me. They are going to kill us!
Take your hands off of my breasts! Take your hands off you henchman! Do not touch my breasts! Stop, murderer!
(Voice of one of the agents speaking to another): She has a cell phone, there it is!
You murderer, get your hands off of my breasts!
The call is cut at this moment.
Minutes after the arrest, Barbara Moya, mother of Damaris Moya Portieles (one of the women arrested) and witness of the brutal aggresions against these women, said:
“The State Security officials and the National Revolutionary Police ran up to these women and pushed them. The women sat down on the floor as a sign of civic protest and each woman was attacked by 6 to 7 police officials, who picked them up from the floor and aggressively pushing them, that’s how the political police acts in this country. There were about 20 or 30 officials for these women from the Rosa Parks movement.
We were recording everything that they were doing to the women. State Security officials took out a bed sheet and were putting it in front of the camera to try and keep us from recording. We told them that the world was going to find out about all of this, because even if they put that sheet over the camera, we were able to record something”.