They Beat a Cuban Journalist and Warned Him: ‘This is a Preview of What Can Happen if You Go Out on 15 November’

In August, Vladimir Turró Páez was summoned and intimidated by State Security. (Screen capture)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Havana, 5 November 2021 — The journalist Vladimir Turró, a contributor to CubaNet , denounced this Thursday the aggression he suffered in the middle of the street at the hands of Cuban State Security agents. “Three henchmen of the Castro dictatorship hit me in the eye,” the reporter wrote on his social networks. “They told me: ‘This is a preview of what can happen to you if you go out on November 15 to be doing the filthy journalism that you do’.”

Summons, threats and intimidation of activists, opponents and independent journalists continue to be the constant, with 10 days remaining until the Civic March for Change, convened by the Archipiélago platform.

Turró was taken by surprise this Thursday morning when he was near his home, located in Párraga, in the municipality of Arroyo Naranjo. Regarding this attack, the reporter María Matienzo Puerto warned the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights: “Between this and the fact that they begin to assassinate us there is only one step.”

The attack on Turró occurred on the same day that the Cuban Ministry of Justice reiterated the illicit nature of the 15N (November 15) march with the argument that “it is not carried out in harmony with the constitutional assumptions and principles,” and follows the line of terrorizing any attempt at peaceful demonstration. In October the authorities had asserted that “crimes of disobedience, illegal demonstrations, instigation to commit a crime” would be punished.

Last August, Turró was summoned by State Security agents to the Sixth Unit of the Marianao Police, where two officers who identified themselves as Michel and Dominic tried to intimidate the journalist by initiating “a judicial process.”

Attempts by the political police to scare the reporter included threats of “fatal consequences” and of being “severely punished” if he did not quit his job, which they consider “illegal” and “paid by a foreign government.”

In his social networks, Turró has expressed his support for journalists Esteban Rodríguez and Lázaro Yuri Valle, who remain unjustly imprisoned. Rodríguez is a contributor to ADNCuba and has been imprisoned since April 30 for his participation in an act of solidarity with the artist Luis Manuel Otero Alcántara on Obispo Street in Havana.

Yuri is accused of “contempt and enemy propaganda” for covering the distribution of leaflets from Havana, he was arrested on June 15. Rodríguez and Yuri, Turró pointed out on his social networks, “suffer the weight of injustice from a regime that treats journalists as criminals.”


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