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Cuban Government Turns To New Forms Of Repression

Cuban Government Turns To New Forms Of Repression

14ymedio, Havana, 3 July 2014 — Last June, there were 198 fewer
arbitrary arrests of Cuban activists and opponents compared to the same
month last year, according to a report by the Cuban Commission on Human
Rights and National Reconciliation, which recorded a total of 380
arrests in June 2017.

The number, however, is slightly higher than that recorded in May of
this year, according to the report. “We documented four cases of
physical aggression and 28 acts of harassment, attributable, without any
doubt, to the secret political police and parapolice elements,” the
report added.

The independent entity says that “in recent months there have been very
visible efforts by the Castro regime to avoid the arrests of
opponents.” The government has also avoided, in the Commission’s
opinion, “the imposition of prison sentences to avoid criticism by
international public opinion.”

“There are increasingly frequent cases of citations or threatening
police visits, pressures on innocent relatives and other intimidating
acts,” the report said.

The Commission notes that “at least four peaceful opponents have been on
hunger strike during the past month” and mentions, in particular, the
case of Jorge Cervantes Garcia, an activist with the Patriotic Union of
Cuba (UNPACU) who did not eat for 39 days to protest his imprisonment,
finally abandoning this form of protest last Saturday.

During June, “the highest number of violations of freedom of movement in
many years” was recorded when authorities prevented at least 29
dissidents from traveling abroad. “Some were detained for hours and
others were physically assaulted,” the statement said.

The Cuban Observatory for Human Rights (OCDH), based in Madrid, cited
410 arbitrary detentions in Cuba last month, of which 237 were against
women and 173 against men, while “the number of blacks arrested was 138.”

The organization warns that although the arrest figures “are
significantly lower than those for the same period in 2016, they are
still scandalous, and the levels of repressive are the same or greater.”

For the Observatory, the decrease in the number of detentions “is not
due to the existence of any positive change in the political will of the
Cuban Government, but to the already denounced changes in its methods of
repression.”

The new strategy against opponents is based on “short-term arrests”
reinforced by “direct pressure and attacks on the children and relatives
of activists, the confiscation or theft of personal property or the
tools of work.” The report states that “the fabrication of criminal
offenses is common” as is “impeding [activists] from leaving the
country,” along with other methods.

The OCDH also warned about the fabrication of “false profiles on social
networks,” allegedly set up by dissidents, and the “publishing of
indecent content” on these profiles. These are “campaigns conceived by
intelligence officers and launched in the environment of the University
of Computer Sciences UCI and its subsidiaries,” the report said.

“The Government maintains intact and reinforces its ability to
systematically and selectively violate its citizens’ exercise of
universal rights and especially so in the case of activists and members
of independent civil society,” it concludes.

Source: Cuban Government Turns To New Forms Of Repression – Translating
Cuba –
translatingcuba.com/cuban-government-turns-to-new-forms-of-repression/

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