Orlando Zapata Tamayo Civic Resistance Front Holds Congress in Havana / Cubanet, Arturo Rojas Rodriguez

Jorge Luis García Pérez Antúnez and Egberto Escobedo (photo by the author)
Jorge Luis García Pérez Antúnez (r) and Egberto Escobedo (l) (photo by the author)

cubanet square logoCubanet, Arturo Rojas Rodriguez, 3 December 2015 – This morning, in the Havana municipality of Boyeros, 53 members of the Orlando Zapata Tamayo Civic Resistance Front, representing several regions of the country, held their first congress and launched the campaign “No, No and No to Dictatorship.”

The event, which discussed among other issues the need to diversify the scenario of peaceful struggle and develop a set of strategies to promote it, was presided over by the human rights activist Jorge Luis García Pérez “Antúnez,” and was attended by, among others, Agustin Lopez Canino, director of the digital portal Cubanos de Adentro y de Abajo, and Raul Borges Alvarez, President of the Party for Christian Democratic Unity of Cuba. Continue reading “Orlando Zapata Tamayo Civic Resistance Front Holds Congress in Havana / Cubanet, Arturo Rojas Rodriguez”

Speaking to this media, Antunez said: “We developed this conclave at a crucial moment in our struggle. The members of the front I represent agree not allow the reformation of ‘Raulismo’ under the complicit gaze of the United States government and we are convinced that this is the time to move to a higher phase of the struggle.”

Orlando Zapata Tamayo Civic Resistance Front leader, calls for strengthening the peaceful struggle (photo by the author)
Orlando Zapata Tamayo Civic Resistance Front leader, calls for strengthening the peaceful struggle (photo by the author)

“We divorce ourselves from the schematic and routine methods of struggle and assume an offensive position to confront and overthrow the Cuban dictatorship,” he added.

The activity opened with a minute of silence in tribute to the deceased historic leader of the Ladies in White, Laura Pollan.

Participating in the activity were female delegations from the Orlando Zapata Tamayo Civic Resistance Front, members of the Christian Democratic Party of Cuba, and the Committee On Aid To Political Prisoners And Independent Journalists.

Antonio Rodiles Arrives in Miami After Being Unable to Leave Cuba for 8 Months / 14ymedio

Antonio Rodiles, interviewed by Marti Noticias on his arrival in Miami. (MartiTV)
Antonio Rodiles, interviewed by Marti Noticias on his arrival in Miami. (MartiTV)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, 4 August 2015 – The director of the alternative project Estado de Sats, Antonio Rodiles, arrived in Miami this Monday after 8 months during which the Government prevented his leaving the island. Hours earlier he had learned that the authorities would finally allow him to renew his passport, along with the leader of the Ladies in White, Berta Solar, and Jorge Luis Garcia Perez known as Antunez. The three traveled to the United States to attend a meeting with Cuban exiles.

“We came to talk with friends, with the exile, to try to create the greatest possible solidarity at this time. I believe there is a lot of concern for the reality we are living in and we have to speak with everyone and coordinate with each other inside and outside the country,” Rodiles told MartiNoticias on his arrival in Miami.

The opponent, who has been unable to leave Cuba for months, has experienced acts of repudiation and episodes of violence that required him to have emergency surgery after suffering a fracture of the nasal septum and a perforated ear drum in an act of violence.

“There has been a great increase in repression and especially in the violence,” he stated in front of the cameras. A statement that was affirmed by Antunez. “It’s noteworthy that around the corner from the new US embassy in Cuba they are savagely repressing the Ladies in White movement and the opposition. They are emboldened, bringing in mobs on buses, trucks full of military repressors, which shows they have a radical and open opposition to us.”

Berta Soler said that the group does not oppose negotiations between the United States and Cuba but they want them to be “conditioned” on decreasing the repression against those who peacefully defend human rights.

Antunez added that their trip to the Miami comes at a time when Cuba’s destiny is in play “with Kerry’s visit to Havana, the preparations for the Pope’s visit, and the regime trying to manage its fraud change.” According to Rodiles, there is no such change, given nothing has changed with regards to human rights, nor are there any changes economically.

The activists will return to Cuba before John Kerry visits the island on Friday, August 14.

About 70 Ladies in White and Activists Arrested Sunday / 14ymedio

The Ladies in White in Gandhi Park on a previous Sunday
The Ladies in White in Gandhi Park on a previous Sunday (Americateve)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, 19 July 2015 — This Sunday has led to the arrest of forty Ladies in White and thirty activists, at the conclusion of their usual march on 5th Avenue in the Havana neighborhood of Miramar.

After Mass in the church of Santa Rita, the Ladies in White gathered together with several activists in Gandhi park. There, from the speakers of a car, was heard a composition by the rocker Gorki Aguila, that pays tribute to these women and their human rights movement.

Gorki Aguila told 14ymedio  the song that just premiered, was produced in the studios of La Paja Records, managed by the group Porno for Ricardo. In addition to the melody of a cello, the musical theme includes strings, guitar, bass, drums and a solo by Aguila himself.

According to the artist “the intention was to give to the Ladies another song, to encourage other artists to make artworks to them, they deserve it.”

The renowned musician was taken to the so-called Vivac de Calabazar prison with Jorge Moya, Jorge Luis Antunez, Claudio Fuentes, Egberto Escobedo and Antonio Gonzalez Rodiles, among others. The women may have been transferred to a detention center in Tarara, east of Havana, where they are routinely detained.

Estado de Sats… for our Spanish-speaking viewers

Unfortunately we do not have the resources to translate and subtitle all the wonderful videos coming out of Estado de Sats and the Forum for Rights and Freedom, but for our many readers who do understand spoken Spanish, we just wanted to remind you they are there.

This particular video is a discussion of the Americas Summit in Panama.

The Estado de Sats YouTube channel is here.

29 April 2015

Post Summit Debate / 14ymedio

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14ymedio bigger14ymedio, 17 April 2105 – This Friday morning, the Forum for Rights and Freedoms convened a group of activists to a meeting under the title After the Summit in Panama, what next?  The event took place at the home of Antonio González Rodiles, director of the opposition group Estado de Sats.

About 70 attendees heard testimony from Berta Soler, Jorge Luis Garcia Perez Antunez, Gorki Águila, Roberto de Jesús Guerra and other activists who participated in the Civil Society Forum during the recently concluded Seventh Summit of the Americas in Panama.

The discussions addressed issues related to the restoration of relations between Cuba and the United States and on the actions taken by the representatives of civil society sent to Panama by the Cuban government.

“My Most Fruitful and Difficult Experience Has Been Jail” / 14ymedio, Lilianne Ruiz, Antunez

Jorge Luis García Pérez, Antunez. (14ymedio)
Jorge Luis García Pérez, Antunez. (14ymedio)

14ymedio, LILIANNE RUIZ, Havana, October 25, 2014 — On leaving prison, it took Jorge Luis Garcia Perez, known as Antunez, some time to digest that he could go where he wanted without being watched. They had held him captive for 17 years and 37 days of his life.

Just as he learned to do in jail, today he devotes his efforts to civic resistance, inspired by the doctrine of Gene Sharp and Martin Luther King. His movement gathers dozens of activists who carry out street protests and civic meetings in several provinces of the country and in his native Placetas.

Lilianne: Let’s talk about before going to prison, adolescent Antunez. What did you want to be?

Antunez: In adolescence, a firefighter. I liked the idea of rescuing people, putting out fires. But before going to prison I wanted to become a lawyer. I believe that was my calling.

Lilianne: Jail is a survival experience. Do you think it hardened you?

Antunez: The most fruitful and difficult experience, as paradoxical as it may seem, has been jail. I never could imagine that jail was going to be a hard as it was, nor that I was going to be a witness to and a victim of the vile abuses that I experienced. I do not know how to answer you if it hardened me or not. When I entered prison I had a much more radical ideology, it was less democratic. But jail, thanks to God and to a group of people whom I met, helped me to become more tolerant, more inclusive, and to respect various opinions.

As a prisoner, I went to the most severe regime in Cuba. The gloomy prison of Kilo 8 in Camaguey, commonly known as “I lost the key,” where the most sinister repressors are found. Torture forms part of the repressive mentality of the jailers in a constant and daily way. It was there where a group of us political prisoners came together and founded the Pedro Luis Boitel Political Prisoner’s Association, in order to confront repression in a civic way. Thus, I tell you that prison did not harden me, because if it had, I would have emerged with resentment, hatred, feelings of vengeance, and it was not so.

Lilianne: What is your favorite music?

Antunez: I like romantic music, Maricela, Marco Antonio Solis, Juan Gabriel. But I also enjoy jazz, although I am no expert. The music to which I always sleep is instrumental.

Lilianne: Will you share with us your personal projects?

Antunez: There is a saying according to which a man, before he dies, should plant a tree, write a book and have a child. Fortunately, there is already a book, titled Boitel Lives; CADAL published it in 2005. I have planted many trees, because I am a country peasant. I only need to have a son with the woman I love, Iris Tamara Perez Aguilera, so here I am now telling you one of my goals I am aiming for.

Lilianne: You know that a growing number of dissidents and activists have identified four consensus points. What do you think?

Antunez: I believe that they are standing demands that concern all members of the opposition and all Cubans wherever they are. I wish that more fellow countrymen would adhere to these four points. I believe that they represent the sentiment of all good Cubans: to free political prisoners, for the Cuban government to ratify the human rights agreements, recognize the legitimacy of the opposition and stop repression. Everything that is done for change, to free us from the communist dictatorship that oppresses us, is positive.

Lilianne: Why does Antunez not leave Placetas?

Antunez: Not everyone wants to go to Havana. I know many people who keep their rootedness. I would say that, more than roots, it is a spiritual necessity. I leave Placetas three or four days and I begin to feel bad. And that sensation that I have when I come up the heights, coming from Santa Clara… that is something inexplicable. The motto that I repeat, “I won’t shut up, and I’m not leaving Cuba,” means also: “I won’t shut up and I’m not leaving Placetas.”

Translated by MLK

No, No and No Raul Castro / Jose Luis Garcia Antunez

Jorge Luis Antunez (EFE)
Jorge Luis Gracia Antunez (EFE)

This I believe is the second or third occasion that I write to you, and as always without the least mood or desire that you answer me, because given the absolute contempt and disgust that emanates from your person I can’t feel otherwise.

Señor Dictator and Genocide, 24 years and five months ago at barely 25 years, five months and 15 days of age I dared to defy you.  Surely your lackeys and sycophants in the high command of the political police and the party mentioned it to you.

I remind the dictator, that night you pronounced in the city of Santiago de Cuba that call to the Fourth Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba, and as always with a discourse like so many and like so many of your brother’s, barely a few paid you any attention.

I recall that I was in the plaza that you all call Revolution, where big loudspeakers transmitted to mute, hungry and above all deaf people your verbal diarrhea. That was Thursday March 15, 1990, Stalinist Europe was falling, the old Soviet empire was at the point of disintegrating and here in the Caribbean a senile caste was clinging to power and refusing to implement reforms. Continue reading “No, No and No Raul Castro / Jose Luis Garcia Antunez”

For demanding them, that evening, your bullying forces savagely beat me, their educational bodies tortured me and instructed me so that months later your lackey judiciary would sentence me to deprivation of liberty for the famous crime of “oral enemy propaganda.”

Señor Dictator, I believe it feasible to confess to you that at the moment of my detention I was still unaware of the long and proven history of crime and terror instituted by your brother and you.

From the forced labor, the concentration camps of the UMAP, the sad history of those captive peoples and not to mention the Castro meddling in the internal affairs of other countries and in international conflicts.  Maybe because of that lack of knowledge, I only asked for reforms and screamed that communism was a mistake and a utopia. Today, after knowing your system better, I ask for its overthrow and I catalog communism as an aberration and a crime: the social plague of the 20th century.

It was only enough for me that day to feel that as a young man and a Cuban, I was not free; that as a social being I lacked something in order to be able to breathe and walk. I felt that I was prohibited from speaking and that I must either continue using the mask in order to avoid problems, or remove it and act and live in accord with myself although that would mean suffering the most horrible repression.

I did that, I defied you, General without battles.  I did it in spite of your known fame as a cruel and bloodthirsty man. I did it, General and the only thing that I regret is not having had the valor, the opportunity or perhaps the possibility of doing it much sooner.

On the other hand, I also have to confess to you that the idea never entered my mind that such a sickening fury of hatred and harassment was going to be applied to me.

That in 1993, three years after the arrest and completing my unjust imprisonment in Cause # 4 of 1990, your famous division for crimes against State Security in the gloomy Popular Provincial Tribunal of Santa Clara condemned me again, now in Cause #5 of that year for supposed acts against your socialist Revolution for which I had to spend 17 years and 38 days of uninterrupted political imprisonment which offered me the possibility of learning firsthand about torture and vexation as a weapon of political repression.

Raul Castro, my case is known to you, because it was you and no one else who ordered the multiple searches and lootings by those who have victimized me in my home during the last weeks where in the grossest flaunting of force and impunity you commanded that your cowards and opportunist assault troops partially destroy my house and steal items left and right on more than one occasion, goods, office materials, medications, food during these acts known in the Cuban jargon as acts of thievery, well, in the end, each does what he is taught.

Señor General, and now that you also title yourself president of the Councils of State and of Ministers, I know well how many letters opponents have sent you from within and without asking you to carry out reforms and political opening as well as to hold elections. They ask it of you as if you really were a president and as if in Cuba a true government were in power and not a tyranny.

We know that at any moment, you, a Machiavellian and opportunistic tyrant, are going to accept what they ask and carry out a referendum, that is to say, an electoral farce under your control, where like in Venezuela the totalitarian officialism will continue in power.

And it is no longer a secret for anyone, the desperate and astute maneuvers that you and your acolytes carry out in order to manufacture supposed opponents and assure with them the dynastic and ideological succession.

But we warn you, General, which is one of the reasons for this missive, that we, the decent Cubans committed to the future of our country, we are not going to accept that fraudulent and cosmetic change that you all forge. Know also that the Cuban Resistance does not expect or want reforms implemented by the criminal tyranny over which you preside. The only reforms to be accepted by us would be after your overthrow or withdrawal from power, which the people will carry out from their base.

Señor Dictator, enough tricks, because you will not get another new mandate, that does not even matter to us. That you carry out reforms in the arena of economics and migration, that is a bunch of lies, and that does not matter to us, either. That your regime carries out an update of its model is another fallacy and another lie. That is more of the same. That you will sell a monetary reform, tremendous trick and lie, General.

We, the people of Cuba, need a democratic system where a market economy prevails. One, two, three or ten thousand currencies, it does not matter, as long as there exists a centralized and asphyxiating economy like your totalitarian system.  We, Señor dictator, we do not want you, nor reforms nor openings, you people are not our owners, nor do you need to dictate our guidelines.

We know that your time on the earth is running out, and that powerful interests have shown the intention of playing the game or dividing juicy profits at the cost of the pain and sacrifice of the Cuban people.

General Raul Catro, warning about the danger of the fraudulent change, you ordered killed Oswaldo Paya and young Harold Cepero.  I doubt that you now have enough goons to keep killing the thousands and thousands that like Paya and Harold will keep denouncing your tricks and constant maneuvers.

For Laura Pollan, a defenseless woman, you sent your paid assassins to get you out of it, because you could not defeat her in her marches every Sunday on Avenue Quinta. It did not matter to you her condition as a woman and the justice of her cry. But also Laura defeated you, coward General, because her valiant troops of the Ladies in White survived the cruel execution of their leader and now spread like patriotic wildfire across the whole Island.

And they have also defeated you: Pedro Luis Boitel, Olegario Charlotte Pileta, Orlando Zpata, Wilman Villar and many others who had the courage to sacrifice themselves in the name of liberty and in respect for their dignity, this honor that you lack as well as your goons who threatened me with death in reprisal for my slogan that “I won’t shut up and I won’t leave Cuba.”

They themselves, also, barely some days ago, during one of the many arrests of which I have been victim, tortured and beat me, now that according to them and you, I sabotage the efforts of your tyranny to normalize relations with the United States.

Know General Raul Castro that neither the absurd precaution of house arrest that weighs against me and the evident threat of being assassinated, will be able to make me change my purpose which is shared by thousands and thousands of Cubans.

You all will not be able, Raul Castro, to crush a people who have grown tired of living without freedom, just as you will not be able to materialize the international conspiracy that is conceived against the cause of freedom for Cuba.  That conspiracy, Raul Castro, will not have success, whether it comes from Havana, Washington, Brussels or Vatican City itself.  You people will not be able, General, because as much as you, your family or that cruel and bloodthirsty party may know, you will be excluded from all process of democratic change because you all mean the negation of democracy itself.

And tell your subordinates, General, that I am here and will be, in my beloved homeland of Placetas from which neither you nor your repressive forces nor anyone will remove me, and that my humble home, although profaned, vandalized and sacked by your faction, will continue being a bastion of Resistance, fight, refuge and sanctuary for my compatriots who fight against you and in favor of liberty and justice.

And tell them also, General, your promoters and accomplices, whether your spokesmen are in Miami, Washington, Brussels, Havana or the Vatican itself to stop rubbing their hands, we say no to your preservation of the status quo because here in Cuba there will be no reconciliation without there first being justice, liberty and democracy.

And, as we foresee, also tell some governments that call themselves democratic and are in on the conspiracy, that they are wasting time, General, that the event that we Cubans need and hope for international solidarity, does not mean that some country or foreign power, as very powerful or influential as it may be, is going to form part of our process of change, because Cubans, those who are within and those who are without, we are convinced that the solution for Cuba has to be and must be resolved among Cubans, excluding of course you people, General, who because of the damage that you have done to our nation, do not even deserve to call yourselves Cubans.

Raul Castro Ruz, in the name of the people of Cuba, my fellow prisoners and the victims of your dictatorship, I tell you no, no and no.

From Placetas, in the heart of Cuba, Jorge Luis Garcia Perez “Antunez,” who will not shut up or leave Cuba.

Translated by mlk.

21 August 2014

Husband-Wife Human Rights Defenders in Imminent Danger: “Don’t allow them to kill us.”

Antunez & SraUrgent Alert

List email from Cuba, from Martha Beatriz Roque, 2/13/2014, 2:15 PM (translated from Spanish): “Jorge Luis García Pérez Antúnez just called to tell me that his house was invaded for the third time, his wife was arrested, and he regained consciousness while laying on the street next to a patrol car. “Don’t allow them to kill us,” he told me in a groggy voice.”

Martha Beatriz then followed with a message to Cuba Archive: “He sounded like he was in a very bad state, exhausted from feeling un-supported. I am very worried that they will kill him and nothing will happen. He is now all alone and in hunger strike.”

“Antunez,” and his wife, Iris Tamara Pérez Aguilera, are leading members of Cuba’s peaceful opposition movement. They went on hunger strike the morning of February 10th to protest the violent repression to which Cuban authorities have most recently subjected them –-detentions, violent home invasions, and confiscation of their belongings. Their telephones have been cut off and since January 24th  their home has been surrounded by security forces.

The couple lives in in Placetas, which is approximately 200 miles from the city of Havana in the province of Villa Clara.

Read remarks Antunez delivered at Georgetown University on September 16, 2013 here.

Antunez13 February 2014

Antunez and His Wife Arrested and Disappeared

Iris Tamara Perez, center, and Jorge Luis García (Antúnez), right
Iris Tamara Perez, center, and Jorge Luis García (Antúnez), right

CUBANET – The house of opposition leader Jorge Luis García (Antúnez) has just been sacked this morning after State Security foreces (political police) carried off him and his wife, Iris Tamara Perez, as well as the noted activist’s brother Loreto Garcia, and his wife as well Donaida González Paseiro.

The events occurred in the morning in the town of Placetas, in Santa Clara province. According to exclusive reports from the Human Rights Activist on the island, Martha Beatriz Roque Cabello, the house was taken by agents looted, and painted with blue oil point on the outside. In the absence of Antunez and his wife they stole a flat-screen television, fixed line telephone, computers, printer, scanner, suitcases with clothes, shoes, as well as  diplomas Antunez had received on his recent trip to the United States for being an open and constant fighter, documents that were hung on the walls.

After the arrest, according to Roque Cabello, the government’s paramilitary mobs held a rally and an act of repudiation, a common practice of the dictatorship since the ‘80s, the purpose of which is to publicly humiliate people. Continue reading “Antunez and His Wife Arrested and Disappeared”

Of those arrested , Antunez ‘s brother, Loreto Garcia, has already been released and it is he who is narrating what happened, according to Roque Cabello.

The whereabouts of Antunez and his wife, at the time of this writing, are still unknown.

Roque Cabello , who knows perfectly the ways of the State Security , believes that looting with impunity will be a standard practice going forward in the life of opponents.

Jorge Luis Garcia (Antúnez) and his wife returned to the island last December 31, after an intense tour of the United States, where they shared an agenda with the opposition in exile.

5 February 2014

Warning Signal / Jorge Luis Garcia Perez Antunez

Archive photo

By: Jorge Luis García Pérez Antúnez, Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Civic Resistance and Civil Disobedience Front. FNRC-OZT

Attention, attention: Never has Cuba been so close to freedom, but never like now has danger loomed that can be cut short and mediated by opportunistic efforts, lacks of faith and even the occasional traitor added to this clear and shameful pact with the Castros…

If we do not stop this dirty and unpatriotic plot in time the results will be the huge fraud-change fraud where the continuity of the Castro regime will be guaranteed when descendants of the leaders of the regime and certain opportunists from here and there will divide up the nation like the booty of corsairs and pirates.

We won’t allow them to eliminate the Cuban resistance. The memory of our fallen and the sacrifice of our compatriots deserve respect and they can’t sit at a negotiating table. I speak on behalf of those who are opposed to a reconciliation without justice first.

As one of the most important Cuban resistance slogans say: I do want real change.

Placetas, 18 July 2013.

19 July 2013

Massive Wave of Arrests of Dissidents in Cuba Happening Right Now / Antunez – Jorge Luis Garcia Perez

Antunez
Antunez – Jorge Luis Garcia Perez

Attention! Attention! Attention!

Reporting is Jorge Luis Garcia Perez (Antunez) general coordinator of the Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Civic Resistance Front from the city of Placetas, Villa Clara province.

Right now several regime opponents are being violently arrested in the city of Placetas as they are trying to go out into the streets to honor the martyr Orlando Zapata Tamayo and the four Brothers to the Rescue pilots murdered on the orders of Fidel and Raul Castro.

Similarly, minutes ago it was reported that other members of the opposition in the city of Camaguey were violently arrested inside the Fernandez Santos Housing project.

Also, several opponents threaten to take to the streets in the town of Violeta, in Ciego de Avila province if their leader Julio Colombie Batista is not released.

Also there is an operation mounted outside his home, with music, rum and loudspeakers, placed there by order of State Security, to prevent opposition activities.

24 February 2013

About the Migratory “Reforms” / Jorge Luis Garcia Perez Antunez #Cuba

In February 2008, the United States government granted me a special humanitarian visa for my consequent admission into Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami in order to treat my severe cardiovascular infection which I still have. Because I put as a condition real guarantees of returning as soon as I finished the examinations, and not accepting the humiliating condition of permanent exit from the country, the political police denied me the famous exit permit.

Friend who follows me on Twitter, it still has not occurred to me to reactivate my passport, foreseeing the little Castro-communist game. But if I ask myself, in the case of seeking it, will the tyranny permit me to leave to go to the hospital and then return, knowing that I will neither shut up nor leave?

Camarioca, in the ’60’s. Mariel in the ’80’s. The rafter crisis in 1994. And now, the migratory reformers: the escape valves continue, the strategies continue, the bleeding of our nation by the Castro-communist tyranny continues.

Alert, compatriots. Alert, compatriots. This can be a little game of incalculable and dire consequences for our nation.

Translated by mlk

January 15 2013