Phone screen: On the way with a friend I got a message that said SATS is suspended today, is that true? / It’s false, State Security sent it; yes there will be Estado de SATS / Thanks, we’re coming there without fail and will be in SATS.
On the afternoon of August 16, State Security deployed an inordinate operation at intersections and around the site of Estado de SATS to stop the public from coming to the screening of the documentary Ai Weiwei Never Sorry, at our usual audiovisual space, Cinema at All Costs.
Earlier, with the complicity of the telephone companies ETECSA And CUBACEL, they blocked the cellphone service of all members of the Estado de SATS working team, and sent false messages announcing the suspension of the event using Antonio G. Rodiles’ cellphone, in a serious act of identity theft, punishable internationally as the crime of fraud.
Despite this, 33 people came, as many others were detained on the way and coerced to return home, some beaten and handcuffed were “freed” later on the highway heading to Pinar del Rio.
Days ago, on August 5, they had mounted a first operation and threatened and intimidated young people leaving Estado de SATS after the first day of a Playback Theater workshop.
The next day, two of these students could not attend as they were arrested, forced to ride in a police car, and abandoned in a distant city.
In recent days there have been similar brutal acts of abuse against activists and Ladies in White in the province of Matanzas. The constant violation of individual rights is routine in Cuba, and the regime aims using violence to silence any dissenting voice.
Over the past year the operations and arrests around Estado de SATS were increasingly violent, reaching its climax with the beating and detention for 19 days of Antonio G. Rodiles last November.
Now, they are starting again.
We are continuing to exercise our liberties. We will sustain our civic work anchored in respect for the human rights contained in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the UN Covenants, whose ratification and implementation we are demanding through the Campaign For Another Cuba.
Our commitment in the face of mediocrity and totalitarianism will continue to be creativity and talent.
Our responsibility, a better country
Estado de SATS team
17 August 2013