14ymedio, Havana, 8 April 2021 — The independent reporter Iliana Hernández, a contributor to CiberCuba, was arrested this Thursday afternoon in Old Havana, and taken to the Infanta and Manglar station, in the capital municipality of Cerro. Hernández, who is also an activist, was walking with some friends on Obispo Street when she was intercepted by a police officer who asked them to show their IDs and then called for reinforcements.
In a video circulating on social networks, the moment was recorded when the group, a few minutes after the incident, was approached by State Security agents in civilian clothes and police officers who arrived in a patrol car. They were arrested fter a woman appeared and shouted phrases including: Long live Cuba, Long live the Revolution, Long live Fidel and Raúl, I do defend this Revolution, Nobody will knock it down.
“The boulevard is full of people and he [the policeman] comes to ask us for documentation as if we were doing something wrong,” Hernández is heard saying in the recording.
“This is an outrage because they want to take us without a warrant,” said Eliecer Romero Pérez, who was accompanying the reporter. Romero also mentioned Article 42 of the Constitution of the Republic , which says that all people “have the right to enjoy the same public spaces and service establishments.”
“Look around you, there are two or three State Security Agents who are here who are watching us, why? Because we do not think the same, gentleman. I do not want anyone dead, I want everyone to live, that is good, that is what I want. And for thinking like that, the police stop us, because we think differently,” added Romero.
Seconds before the woman who shouted several phrases in support of the Revolution appeared, Hernández affirmed: “I want a free Cuba so that these things do not happen and that is why we are fighting.”
“They weren’t doing anything, they weren’t in any demonstration, they weren’t committing any crime,” a close source tells 14ymedio. “And the police went directly to where they were and sent for the patrol to take them away.”
In another video posted on Facebook, Romero appears with Thais Mailén Franco Benítez, who documented how they were taken to the station. According to Franco, they were simply taking photos on Obispo Street when they were arrested.
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