14ymedio, Havana, 10 December 2015 – State Security agents who introduced themselves as members of counterintelligence are outside 14ymedio’s newsroom right now to keep our reporters from covering the events of Human Rights Day, celebrated this Thursday.
Several neighbors sounded the alert when, from the early hours of the morning, they saw two men sitting on the stairs that lead to the 14th floor, where the newsroom is located. The subjects, dressed in civilian clothes with earpieces in their right ears, have stayed there since dawn, controlling everyone who ascends or descends the last floor of the building.
Yesterday, Wednesday, several groups of activists denounced the arrests and searches throughout the country. The executive secretary of the Patriotic Union of Cuba (UNPACU), José Daniel Ferrer, reported the arrest of 12 members of that organization in Camagüey, and that of the cell coordinator Roberto Ferrer in Havana. The activist reported an operation in front of the UNPACU headquarters and a Communist Party fair “with repressive purposes” outside the national headquarters of the Ladies in White in Lawton.
The dissident and blogger Agustin Lopez also announced that he will repeat his action of last year, consisting of distributing sheets with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in a central location in the capital.
The situation against 14ymedio is a repeat for the second consecutive. On December 10, 2014 a strong police operation was maintained around the newsroom and, in addition, two reporters from this paper were arrested, Luz Escobar and Victor Ariel Gonzalez.
On Thursday, when the editor-in-chief of this newspaper, Reinaldo Escobar, tried to get to the elevator to go outside, the following exchange occurred with the two guards:
– Hey, Reinaldo, we are with CI and we are warning you, you are not going out today
– What is CI?
– Don’t be silly you know.
– Constructors Integrated?
– No, State Security.
– But the acronyms for State Security are others, the one I know is SE.
– It is the same.
– No, it’s not the same, and beware lest the weight of the law fall on you for passing yourselves off as a being from an organization that you aren’t.
– Well, the most important thing here is that you are not going out.
– And why?
– Because today is Human Rights Day and you know it.
– Do you have a warrant or any paper that you can show me where it says that?
– No, but you are not going out.
– Well, you’ll have to stay here until midnight … because I’m going out at some point.
– You’re not going to leave, that we assure you.