Cuba: Families of jailed protesters blocked from assembly US officers

Havana, Cuba

United States officers criticized the Cuban authorities on Wednesday for what it described as “inhumane” interference with the households of jailed Cuban protesters, a few of whom had been prevented from assembly with US diplomats in Havana.

“We condemn the Cuban government’s detention of family members of imprisoned #11J protesters who were scheduled to meet with American officials today in Havana,” the Assistant Secretary of State for the Western Hemisphere Brian A. Nichols stated on Twitter. “Preventing parents from talking about their jailed children is unjust and inhumane.”

The protesters had been jailed following island-wide protests that began on July 11, 2021.

US officers deliberate to fulfill with their households throughout a visit to Havana about migration points – one of many highest-level conferences Cuba has had with the Biden administration – that appeared to point a brand new method in the direction of the communist-run island following years of elevated sanctions.

However on Wednesday, no less than six of the protesters’ household had been themselves stopped by police as they headed to the assembly, in line with human rights activists.

Although Cuban officers usually complain that diplomats from the US and Europe meet with the anti-government activists, it’s uncommon for authorities to hold out group detentions to stop a gathering from going down at an embassy.

“I was stopped at a check point and taken to a police station,” Marta Perdomo informed CNN. She was touring to the US Embassy the place she had been invited to talk with the visiting officers concerning the case of her two sons, who’re each serving jail sentences for his or her function within the protests.

Perdomo, who stated she was launched by police in a while Wednesday afternoon, has advocated for her sons’ launch after they took to the streets of their city on July 11 final 12 months, calling for higher freedoms and criticizing Cuban officers.

Whereas a few of final 12 months’s protests turned violent, many remained peaceable with demonstrators calling for adjustments to the island’s system, which is one-party state led by the Cuban communist get together that bans political opposition.

The Cuban authorities has claimed the US authorities orchestrated the protests and has handed down prolonged sentences to lots of of protestors.

Cuban officers didn’t reply to a request for remark.

However late on Wednesday, Carlos Fernández de Cossío, the Cuban Overseas Ministry’s prime diplomat for US affairs, wrote on Twitter: “The mistaken belief by the US that it has the prerogative to interfere in Cuba’s domestic affairs is almost as old as both countries. It explains to some degree the immoral & illegitimate economic blockade conceived to depress the standard of living of each Cuban.”