Despite a propaganda-based campaign by the Cuban dictatorship against the Ladies in White in recent days, this 30th of June – the last day of the month – these women managed to march and assist Mass in different areas of the country, demanding freedom for all those Cubans who reside behind bars for thinking differently.
A total of 70 Ladies in White marched in Havana and participated in Mass at Santa Rita Catholic Church, according to a message published by former political prisoner Angel Moya Acosta on his Twitter account (@jangelmoya). The women were accompanied by 43 male dissidents.
In Matanzas province, 25 Ladies in White carried out their activities on the streets of different cities, reported Sayli Navarro (@SayliNavarro), a young member of the group.
Ivan Hernandez Carrillo, an independent unionist and former political prisoner, confirmed via Twitter (@ivanlibre) that in the central province of Villa Clara 6 Ladies in White marched to and from church without any problems.
Amid police vigilance, 1 Lady in White marched in the province of Ciego de Avila.
Hernandez Carrillo added in the Eastern province of Holguin, despite some arrests, 5 women were able to march. Among these was Gertrudis Ojeda Suarez, from the municipality of Banes, who managed to march for the first time in 2013.
“I’ve been arrested as soon as I step out of my house each Sunday of 2013“, explained Ojeda Suarez to this blog, “and this Sunday I was finally able to march to the Catholic Church of Banes…with strong police vigilance, but I was able to go inside and there were 2 other Ladies in White from the municipality waiting for me“.
As soon as Mass concluded, the 3 women marched, dressed in white and carrying flowers.
“This has been a huge blow for State Security and we are very happy with this in Banes“, expressed Gertrudis, “despite the constant harassment, we carried out our march…and we will continue going out, even if they arrest us“.
In Guantanamo another 11 members of the female group marched and in Granma 5 managed to do so.
Ivan Hernandez added that 44 Ladies in White participated in Mass in El Cobre National Shrine in Santiago de Cuba and later carried out their symbolic march in solidarity with the political prisoners on the island. State Security had blocked service on Belkis Cantillo’s cell phone for the entire day. Cantillo is the representative of the group in that province.
The Ladies in White have made it more than clear that they will continue firm, marching out on the streets of Cuba, despite police persecution, while their membership increases.