Political Police Harass Cuban Journalist Camila Acosta and Her Friends

Camila Acosta has been barred from leaving the country for more than a year.

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Havana, July 27, 2021 — Journalist Camila Acosta, a contributor to the Cubanet news portal, was detained for several hours this Monday in front of the home of her friend Fabio Corchado, who had given her shelter in his house for the last few days. The reporter was trying to persuade the political police to release Corchado’s younger brother, who had been taken to State Security’s Villa Marista for no good reason.

“I’ve been under house arrest since they released me on the 16th and I hadn’t come out. Today I did, at 6:20 in the afternoon, because Fabio Corchado told me that his brother wasn’t answering his cell phone. We were worried because he didn’t show up. When we confirmed his arrest, I went out to speak directly with the security agent who is watching me. They then picked me up and took me to Zapata and C [police station]” the journalist told this newspaper, after being released at 10:00 pm.

“First they took me to the jail, and then they brought me up to interrogate me. The officers told me that Víctor [Corchado] had declared that I gave him a flash memory with some videos of the July 11 demonstration for him to upload, because he works in the Government and has a good [internet] connection,” the reporter explained, describing the words of the State Security agent as a lie, and saying that she believes they are using the brother to pressure Fabio Corchado.

“Now they have the boy in Villa Marista. They already called his mother to bring him toiletries tomorrow. What they are doing is pressuring the family to get Fabio out of the house,” said Acosta. He has already been evicted from several rentals due to pressure from State Security, to get him to abandon his journalistic work.

According to the writer Ángel Santiesteban, State Security officials have been carrying out “provocations” since Sunday at Fabio Corchado’s home. The author told 14ymedio that around midnight agents knocked on Corchado’s door to talk to him, and when he refused because it was very late, “they completely shut off his phone line.”

“In the morning they arrested his younger brother, who was only going to work, and then they kidnapped Camila. Now Fabio has asked me, because he doesn’t have internet access, to report that even if they arrest his mother, he is not going to throw Camila out of his home,” added Santiesteban.

Camila Acosta was arrested on the 12th after her participation in the July 11 protests and released on the 16th with a precautionary measure of “house arrest” while the investigation continues. As the reporter explained at the time, the officers intend to prosecute her for the crimes of “disrespect” and “public disorder,” for having recorded videos during the demonstrations.

The journalist has also been barred from leaving the country for more than a year.

Translated by Tomás A.


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