CELAC Summit Passed Like a Storm
CELAC Summit Passed Like a Storm / Martha Beatriz Roque Cabello
Posted on February 11, 2014
HAVANA, Cuba — There is not a single time that the phone rings for good
news; these days every conversation is based on arrests, beatings and
demonstrations, an eloquent way to carry out the Summit of CELAC
(Community of Latin-American and Caribbean States) which turned into a
parody of the famous novel “Wuthering Heights” by Englishwoman Emily Bronte.
But although the meeting was held in Havana, the capital was not the
only place where these situations were produced. In other sites as
distant as the eastern provinces also there were moments of tension
because of the repressive work of the political police.
In Manzanillo, Granma province, on January 28, some members of the Cuban
Community Communicators Network could not leave their homes, as, for
example, Xiomara Moncada Almaguer who wanted to visit her ill six-year
old grandson; when she came out of her house, six women armed with
parasols attacked her in front of State Security officer Camilo Mandiel
(alias The Joker), who permitted them to hit the peaceful woman.
Leonardo Cancio Santana Ponce tried to leave his house — on the same day
— on bicycle and was impeded by Captain Napoles, Sector Chief, whom he
found in the company of four State Security officers, among them Alexis
Guerra and the older Able Guevara. Cancio explained that they lifted him
and threw him inside his house, together with the bicycle. A drunk
neighbor, by the name of Pedro, defended him, yelling “abusers,” and
they arrested him.
Also, the house of Tania de la Torre Montesinos, in Manzanillo, was
under surveillance by political police, and they did not allow her
daughter Ariuska Marquez to go out to the street, in spite of the fact
that she is not a dissident activist.
In Holguin province, at two in the afternoon, a demonstration against
Doctor Ramon Zamora Rodriguez began at his house on Avenue of the
Americas 66 between Comandante Fajardo and Playa Giron in the Ramon
Quintana Division; it lasted until 9 at night. The cheerleaders broke
the fence of the house, the windows and the door by stoning and body
slams; but what is most regretful is that they hit his 13-year-old son.
When they withdrew, those in the dwelling tried to fix some of the
damage, but they had to put furniture behind the door in order to be
able to sleep with some security. The next day, several dissidents went
to try to repair all the breakage done by the mob.
In the basement of my home
On the 29th — like one more Wednesday — no one was permitted to enter my
home, and I was under house arrest. A mob of some 10 or 12 people on the
stairs, some of them neighbors who were paid in the morning to dedicate
themselves to those functions, did not let anyone up. Our collaborator
Arnaldo Ramos Lauzurique asked them to identify themselves in order to
learn with what authority they were doing this, and one of the
repressors, by the name of Juan Carlos, (a well-built man of about 35
years of age), who in April 2013 beat me inside my house, went up to
Arnoldo, and the State Security officer there had to intervene so that
he would not hit him, because he surely had orders to do so if something
occurred. You have to remember that Arnoldo is a man of 73 years of age
who suffered 8 years in prison.
From this unclean practice the following community communicators were
arrested: Evelyn Pineda Concepción, Laudelina Alcalde, Maritza
Concepción Sarmientos, Blanca Hernández Moya, Arnaldo Ramos Lauzurique,
José Antonio Sieres Ramallo, Juliet Michelena Díaz, Billy Joe Landa
Linares, Julia Estrella Aramburu Taboas (seized two times because they
jumped on her when she returned), Juan Carlos Díaz Fonseca and Judit
The first three women in this regard were transferred in a patrol car —
the same as everyone — but with the special feature that they left them
in the township Melena del Sur in the Mayabeque Province. When they
arrived at that place, a clearing, they told the police that they were
not going to get out there, and they said they were complying with
orders, that if they did not get out of the car, they would get them out
Also, Julia Estrella Aramburo Taboas, in her second effort to enter her
home, was arrested and taken by patrol car past the town of Santiago de
las Vegas. She resides in Central Havana township and found herself alone.
If the protagonist of Wuthering Heights saw the specter of a woman, in
the Cuban parody we are in front of a ghost that has turned into a
nightmare for the opposition, but unfortunately no president of the
democratic countries of Latin America, who have just visited Havana,
have seen it.
*Translator’s note: A popular tactic now is for State Security or the
police to simply pick up dissidents and drive them to ’the middle of
nowhere’ and abandon them, never recording any arrest or detention.
Cubanet, January 30, 2014, Martha Beatriz Roque Cabello
Translated by mlk.
31 January 2014
Source: CELAC Summit Passed Like a Storm / Martha Beatriz Roque Cabello
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