14ymedio, Havana, 11 March 2016 — Gorki Águila, a musician with the band Porno Para Ricardo, has denounced that he was detained and questioned Thursday at Jose Marti airport in Havana, on his arrival from the United States.
Speaking to 14ymedio, Aguila said that the State Security agents who interrogated him initially presented themselves as immigration officers, and were even wearing those uniforms, but when he told them they were from the political police they put him in a room where he was threatened, telling him, “If you up the ante, we’re going to raise it higher still.”
Aguila said that, after the interrogation, on collecting his suitcases, he found that his luggage had been searched. “They read it item by item, inspecting every piece and they really concentrated on anything with writing, like T-shirts with the group’s logo. They took photos of everything, placing a sign with a number next to every item.”
“They detained me and threatened me in every way they know how. They did an exhaustive search, very exhaustive at Customs,” said the musician, in a phone interview with Radio Marti News.
Aguila, a regime opponent as well as an artist, was held for 4 or 5 hours and T-shirts were messages such as “Todos Marchamos” (We All March) and “Boitel and Zapata Tamayo, assassinated by Castro” were confiscated.
“State Security asked me if I had plans to go and see the Rolling Stones,” Gorki added. The rocker accused the authorities of having threatened his daughter and with not being allowed to travel any more.
When the musician was asked why he thought this situation happened, he replied, “They are very concerned with President Obama’s visit to Cuba. They want to try to show a peaceful country, they want to put on a show, a circus with happy and contented people.”
The activist Lia Villares, who arrived on a later flight, also was detained for nearly three hours at airport customs, her luggage and carefully checked and several CDs of the group Porno Para Ricardo were confiscated, along with T-shirts with slogans such as “Down with you know who.”
Martí News reports that several opponents claim Villares is continuing to be held.