14ymedio, Havana, November 9, 2021 — Facing harassment by State Security and the local government, Archipiélago in Santa Clara announced this Tuesday “replacing the initial proposal” of a march on November 15th (15N). The new strategy proposed taking to the streets in “a decentralized manner from any point in the city.”
The convening will still take place at 3:00 pm and participants should wear white. The group requested that those who go out on that day join others they “recognize as supporters of the peaceful protest” and attempt to “make an offering of flowers to any of our heroes,” but “always following the principles of civility and rejecting violence.”
They also suggested avoiding confrontation with those who comply with the regime’s “combat order” and distancing themselves from repressive forces such as “policemen, special forces, Brigadas de Respuesta Rápida (BRR) [Rapid Response Brigades], and any other that the Government manages to convene on that day to repress the protest.”
Archipiélago requested that protesters distance themselves from MLC stores [those that only take payment in hard currency] to “avoid possible infiltrators” who have been ordered by the political police “to attack them,” and also “energetically sing” the National Anthem “in front of the Cuban hero.”
The group reiterated that it will go out on 15N to express themselves against violence, demand the release of political prisoners, that the rights of all Cubans be respected, and that there be a democratic resolution of differences between civil society and the Government of the Island “through democratic and peaceful means.”
Among the concerns that resulted in the modifications to the 15N activities, what stood out was that the “Department of State Security would infiltrate” the ranks of the group to “commit criminal and violent acts against people and public property and that the BRR, responding to President Miguel Díaz-Canel’s combat order, would lash out against the protesters, thus provoking bloodshed and violent confrontations.”
This Monday, the group has called for a massive cazerolazo [beating of pots and pans] on November 14th and 15th, at 8 pm, in support of Cubans who will go out to march and for the more than 600 citizens who remain in prison and are being sentenced to exemplary penalties for exercising their right to dissent.
“Sound your pots for the needed changes in Cuba and because we deserve a dignified life,” they requested on their social media.
Since the Civic March for Change was announced, first for November 20th and later rescheduled for 15N, the members of Archipiélago have suffered repressive acts, they’ve been summoned by the Prosecutor’s Office and State Security and some have even been fired, among them, doctor Manuel Guerra and university professor David Alfredo Martínez Espinosa.
On the other hand, the Asamblea de Resistencia Cubana (ARC) [Assembly of the Cuban Resistance], which comprises over 35 associations that fight for democracy on the Island, encouraged Hispanics in Miami, and especially Venezuelans and Nicaraguans to join a caravan in support of the Civic March for Change next Sunday.
The call is for Venezuelans and Nicaraguans to participate as citizens of “two countries governed by dictatorships, as has occurred in Cuba for 61 years,” stated the organization in a communication shared Tuesday.
“This caravan is not only for Cubans, people of other nationalities, such as Nicaraguans and Venezuelans who are a part of this struggle, are also invited and have confirmed their attendance,” affirmed Orlando Gutiérrez-Boronat, ARC’s coordinator.
At the end of the parade of vehicles, next to Miami’s Freedom Tower, participants will be able to join a flotilla and a human chain of solidarity organized by Movimiento Democracia [Democracy Movement], presided by Ramón Saúl Sánchez, also in support of 15N.
The Civic March on November 15 provides continuity to the protests which erupted in many cities of the country demanding a democratic change; these were harshly repressed by the Government presided over by Miguel Díaz-Canel.
Translated by: Silvia Suárez
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