14ymedio, Havana, 16 March 2018 — After 24 hours in detention, independent journalist Boris González is still in a dungeon at the police station in the city of Pinar del Río, where he was taken under an alleged “tourist harassment” violation, according to his wife Juliette Fernández.
The activist was arrested on Thursday morning when he went to the Municipal Court of Viñales, in Pinar del Rio, to cover a trial against several defendants for invading the property of biologist Ariel Ruiz Urquiola, according to blogger Regina Coyula, speaking to this newspaper.
The activist was arrested on the morning of this Thursday when he went to the Municipal Court of Viñales, in Pinar del Rio, to cover a trial against several defendants for invading the property of biologist Ariel Ruiz Urquiola, according to 14ymedio the blogger Regina Coyula.
González, who has also served as spokesperson for the #Otro18 (Another 2018) campaign, which seeks a democratic change on the island through electoral mechanisms, collaborates with several independent media and is the author of the digital blog Probidad Cuba.
In 2015, the journalist was expelled from his job at the International School of Film, Television and Video (EICTV) in San Antonio de los Baños because of his links with groups of activists from independent civil society.
The oral hearing González was going to cover this Thursday was about the accusations made by Ariel Ruiz Urquiola and his family against several residents who allegedly invaded his property and caused damage in the land located in the Sierra del Infierno, belonging to the Park National Viñales.
Oscar Casanella, Urquiola’s colleague, confirmed to this newspaper at the end of the trial that the defendants Yendry Álvarez and Yoel Álvarez (brothers) were acquitted of the crimes of which they were accused, including threats and coercion.
Urquiola settled in Viñales to carry out an investigation into the origins of life in the area, managed by the university of Havana and Humboldt University in Berlin. However, due to his activism and his closeness to government opponents, the Cuban side cut off its link with the project.
The house located on the plot is owned by Urquiola and the land is managed under a form of leasing known as usufruct and an agroecological farm has been developed. In 2008 the Government of Raúl Castro began the delivery of idle state lands in usufruct to try to revive the agricultural sector.
Urquiola has repeatedly denounced the raising of wild pigs in the area where his farm is located, a situation that has produced a negative environmental impact in a park with high natural and tourist value.
Their denunciations have been directed to the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of the Interior and the authorities of the People’s Power of the zone.
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