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