Cuba Protests: Internet Is Back, Reveals Scenes of a Crackdown on Protesters
Cuba's internet came back and revealed scenes of the government's crackdown on protesters following the mass protests that erupted on Sunday, July 11.
The internet access came back on Wednesday, July 14, after the country was left disconnected from several social media and messaging platforms, The Washington Post reported.
The Cuban government enacted an internet blackout after the historic protests on Sunday, July 11. It has restricted access to social media and messaging platforms, including Facebook.
Executive Director of Human Rights Watch, Ken Roth, condemned the social media blockages, calling it a sign of "out of touch government."
"The sign of unpopular, out-of-touch government; the first thing it does when mass protest erupt is to cut access to social media, hoping to prevent people from talking to each other," said Roth, who linked an article on his tweet.
The sign of an unpopular, out-of-touch government: the first thing it does when mass protests erupt is to cut access to social media, hoping to prevent the people from talking to each other. Good luck with that. Today's Cuba. https://t.co/eSyFxKZrou pic.twitter.com/KO2fILsCeq— Kenneth Roth (@KenRoth) July 14, 2021
Social Media Reveals Scenes of a Crackdown in Cuba
As the social media and internet access returned in Cuba, images and videos surfaced online, revealing Cuban police officers breaking into Cuban's homes and arrest suspected demonstrators, The Washington Post reported.
NBC News cited famous Cuban YouTuber Dina Stars, who was detained by the authorities during a live interview on a Spanish television news show.
Stars was reportedly talking about the protests when she stopped the interview and said that police forces began knocking on her door.
On Wednesday afternoon, she tweeted that she was back home after being detained for 24 hours.
"Yes, they treated me well, but it's still a night that I do not wish on anyone," Stars noted.
Yo llegue a mi casa después de estar 24 horas en un calabozo como si fuera criminal. Si, me trataron bien, pero igual es una noche que no le deseo a nadie. Llegué y me encontré con la noticia de que me botaron como una perra, bueno a mi no, a mi mamá y mis amigos que estaban 👇🏻— Dina Stars 😌 (@Dinastars_) July 14, 2021
Raisa Emilia Gonzáles Cantillo was still waiting for her son Angelo Troya to be released. According to The Washington Post, Troya, an artist and photographer who helped film a part of a music video for "Patria Y Vida," has been detained since he participated in the Cuban protests on Sunday.
Gonzáles noted that the detention of her son "destroyed" her. She added that they do not have the internet to inform the world what's happening to their country.
San Isidro Movement member Anamely Ramos Gonzáles claimed that repression could not only be seen in the protests but also in the homes.
"The Internet blockages were so intense that we haven't been able to confirm the deaths, but we know there are deaths," Gonzáles said.
To date, the Cuba protests only reported one death and leaving several demonstrators and security officials injured. Meanwhile, the lawyers' group Cubalex estimated that about 200 people or more were detained or missing.
Cuba Permits Travelers to Bring Essentials Without Paying Customs
As the Cuba protests continue, Cuban Prime Minister Manuel Marrero announced on Wednesday, July 14, that travelers arriving in the country can now bring in food, medicine, and other essentials without paying their customs, AFP reported.
The announcement came after one of the protesters demanded that people arriving in Cuba would be able to bring in food, medicine, and personal hygiene items from abroad without paying customs duties.
Cuban demonstrators were angry about the country's economic hardship marked by food shortages and lack of electricity and other essentials.
Under Cuban law, travelers were only allowed to bring up to 22 pounds of medicine tax-free, carry limited food amounts, and must pay customs duties.
Starting Monday, July 19, Marrero noted that the limits are lifted, and so are the duties, and it will continue until the end of the year.
This article is owned by Latin Post
Written by: Joshua Summers
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