‘We Will Not Allow the 20N March’, Cuban Political Police Warn Opponent Cuesta Morua

Manuel Cuesta Morúa is vice president of the Council for Democratic Transition in Cuba. (EFE)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Havana, 30 September 2021 — The government opponent Manuel Cuesta Morúa was released on Wednesday night after an arrest of almost 12 hours in which the police told him that the marches called for November 20 will not be authorized, according to the dissident himself speaking to 14ymedio shortly after returning home. The vice president of the Council for the Democratic Transition in Cuba was arrested around 10:00 in the morning as he left his home in the Alamar neighborhood of Havana.

“They took me to the Cojimar station, there they took me to a cell and around two in the afternoon a State Security agent came to launch a monologue, because I don’t usually talk to them,” he explains.

The objective of the interrogation was to know the organizational details of the demonstration on November 20 (20N), a citizen initiative promoted by the actor and playwright Yunior García from the Archipiélago platform and which also supports and promotes Cuesta Morúa. “They always take advantage of something else, but the fundamental issue was the 20N and the participation of the Council for the Democratic Transition in Cuba,” he says.

During the conversation, the officer threatened him, warning him to be ready, as they will take the necessary measures, because the march will not be authorized. “At the end of the interrogation, they took me back to the cell and shortly after 9:00 pm they took me home in a police car.”

The opponent denounces that they fined him 100 pesos “for evading the security apparatus” that they had around his home. “They had an operation for two days to prevent me from going out in the street and that is why they have fined me for going out,” he complains. Since last September 27, when his wife Nairobis Suárez, an activist and member of the Cuban Women’s Network, was also arrested, the police cordon was visible.

The Council of experts of the ‘Transparencia Electoral‘ organization, of which Cuesta Morúa is a member, had demanded his immediate release on social networks this Wednesday, along with the release of “the hundreds of Cubans who are still detained after participating in the massive protests on 11 July.” The organization also expressed its concern over “the arbitrariness with which the Cuban government acts, as well as the systematic persecution and criminalization of democratic factors on the island.”

The repression against activists and citizens who have signed the requests addressed to various provincial governments to hold demonstrations on November 20 has increased in recent days. “Those the State Security agents  visits are our families,” denounced Yaide Gómez, one of the signatories in the province of Holguín.

“The intention was clear, to influence my parents so that they would ask me not to publish more, but he was not even honest with them, he did not mention that letter. You caught it with the door, mijito, those old men taught me values, about everything, above all not to lie. And who would I be, if out of fear, I now changed my principles?”

“We know that they have been harassing the signatories of the letters notifying the authorities of our decision to demonstrate. But they do not intimidate us. All our solidarity is with those who have been detained, interrogated or threatened! We sincerely admire their courage. Each time. there are more cities that deliver new letters [asking for authorization] to march in their territories. What we do is not a crime. And they know it! Those who commit a crime are those who repress our rights!” Yunior García said..

The initiative of the Archipelago collective is getting more and more support in the main Cuban cities. The last to join the demonstrations called for next November 20 were Cienfuegos and Guantánamo, but beforehand the participation of Havana, Holguín and Santa Clara made headlines.


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