The health conditions of the Cuban dissident Yris Tamara Pérez Aguilera, president of the Rosa Parks Movement for Civil Rights, worsened during this past weekend after the violent beating she endured at the hands of State Security agents on March 7th in the city of Santa Clara. This Monday, March 11th, her husband and renowned dissident Jorge Luis García Pérez ‘Antúnez’, said that Yris remained “stable”, according to an audio published on her YouTube channel.
The beating occurred when Yris and other women from the Movement carried out their weekly march in honor of all those fallen in the name of democracy in Cuba, as they do every Thursday. That specific march was being dedicated to the assassinated dissidents Oswaldo Paya and Harold Cepero, and the beating was carried out by State Security agents Eric Francis Aquino Yera and one who goes by the name of Misael. Perez Aguilera was left unconscious on the street and, when found, was rushed by Antunez and other dissidents to the “20th Anniversary” Clinic of Santa Clara, and from there was remitted to the Arnaldo Milian Castro Hospital in the same city, from where she was eventually kicked out as soon she regained her consciousness that same Thursday.
On Friday, March 8th, her health worsened, as she suffered dizziness spells, convulsions, memory lapses and was vomiting blood. Various relatives rushed her to the PlacetasHospital that night. In his Twitter account, Antunez (@antunezcuba) recounted the events of that Friday through a series of messages.
“Yaquelin, a doctor from the PlacetasHospital, diagnosed the grave situation of Yris and wrote down the number of physical blows she had received in her clinical history”, read one message, “The opinion of this doctor and the orthopedic coincide in that Yris be remitted to the ProvincialHospital, they say she should receive specialized assistance”.
Minutes later, a number of State Security agents entered the hospital and began to give orders to the doctors. Dr. Yaquelin was kept from traveling with Yris Perez on the ambulance which would take her to the ProvincialHospital.
“Yris arrived to the provincial hospital, while various doctors commented on how much physical blows she had received”, said another tweet by Antunez, later adding that they had to carry out a ‘TAC’ exam on her, but minutes later “a State Security agent arrived along with Agustin Arocha (a doctor) and they dismissed a possible cerebral trauma”.
Instead, they recommended Yris have a “rectal exam and a gastric cleaning”, which Yris herself, along with her relatives, refused, considering it to be a humiliation. The dissident was kicked out of the hospital but the activists present protested and she had to be rushed to the General Hospital of Placetas, where doctors told her that she had to leave the place, for they were “first revolutionaries and then doctors”, according to other messages published by Antunez.
With Yris back in her home in Placetas, Villa Clara, Antunez informed on Sunday, March 10th, that his wife awoke “delirious and in pain”.
Perez Aguilera suffers from epilepsy and hypoglycemia, and she also has a cyst on the back of her neck due to so many beatings at the hands of the political police. The beating on March 7th worsened her health. But it also unleashed a chain of solidarity throughout the island, where dissidents carried out different activities in solidarity with the opposition leader.
The Cuban Youth Movement for Democracy, for example, published a statement in the voice of its president, Eriberto Liranza Romero, in solidarity with Perez Aguilera, while in Grua Nueva, Ciego de Avila, activists like Julio Columbie Batista, Idael Pérez Díaz and Santa González Pedroso reported pots and pans protests in that city as part of the campaign “We must not let Yris die”, after a call launched by Damaris Moya Portieles from Santa Clara for a national protest during the night of March 9th. Other activities of solidarity were confirmed in the center and Eastern regions of the country, while activists like Sara Marta Fonseca Quevedo, Librado Linares García, Sayli Navarro, Félix Reyes Gutiérrez, Manuel Cuesta Morua and Félix Navarro published messages on their Twitter accounts condemning the beating and in support of Yris.
“It seems that the order to eliminate Yris has been given”, wrote Antunez in another message, “We cannot allow the crime”.
A diverse group of dissidents have said that they will continue demanding medical assistance for Yris Tamara Perez Aguilera, as well as an end to violent against her.
For more information from Cuba, contact:
Jorge Luis García Pérez ‘Antúnez’- Cell Phone: +52-731-656 / Twitter: @antunezcuba