Released From Prison, Two Young People Arrested During the Protests in Calle Linea in Havana

Rosmery Almeda, ’Alma Poet’. (Facebook)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Havana, 20 October 2022 — Two of the protesters arrested on 2 October in a popular protest on Havana’s Calle Línea were released on bail on Wednesday. Rosmery Almeda (Alma Poet) and Danilo Martínez have been able to return home after more than two weeks detention, relatives of the two young people have confirmed.

“Alma Poet is home now, she’s lost three kilos, her smile is hollow, her gaze is sombre, she’s just really empty. But she’ll revive, I am sure she will, she will revive,” wrote activist Arián Cruz, known as Tata Poet and partner of Almeda, on Facebook. “She doesn’t yet have her phone back, but when she does, she will thank everyone so much for their love and support — with her own voice”,  he said.

“The five other guys from Línea y F aren’t back home yet, explained Aylín Sardiña, girlfriend of Martínez. “It’s lovely to have Danilo and Rosmery out on bail but it’s only thanks to everyone who fought for it and to the defence lawyer”. The young woman considers that “they should never have been in there”, referring to the detention centre known as 100 y Aldabó in Havana.

In the early hours of the Sunday on which both protesters were arrested, the locals closed the central avenue at the intersection of Calle F on the route through which traffic joins the Malecón. They blocked off the traffic with upturned rubbish bins, tree branches that had come down with Hurricane Ian that had lashed the island the previous Tuesday, as well as other objects.

A human chain also moved into the road, which was lit by streetlights, and they chanted slogans like “Freedom!”, “Put the power back on!”, “Put the electricity on!”, a demand that was met a short while later by the arrival of a bus and lorries full of shock troops in civilian clothing to oppose the protesters.

According to data provided on Tuesday by the organisation Justicia 11J, since 29 September the number of Cubans arrested in the whole of the island during the power-cut protests has already risen to 52. Since the 11 July 2021 demonstrations at least 1,753 Cubans have been detained for peaceful protests.

For their part, the independent Proyecto Inventario registered more than 200 protests against daily power cuts between 14 July and 15 October. This week alone Cubans have ventured onto the streets in the suburbs of Vista Hermosa in Santiago de Cuba, Buena Vista in Las Tunas, and in San Andrés, Holguín.

Translated by Ricardo Recluso


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