Cuban dissidents denounce police harassment

May 27th, 2008 - 6:39 pm ICT by admin  

Havana, May 27 (IANS) A Cuban dissident group has strongly protested the alleged crackdown by authorities on some 30 opposition activists in the central province of Santa Clara, EFE news agency reported Tuesday. The police Saturday night and Sunday morning arrested a group of dissidents who had gathered in a house in the town of Placetas, some 280 km east of the capital Havana, according to Martha Beatriz Roque, promotor of dissidents group, the Transition Agenda.

The statement said that the police surrounded the house where a political meeting was being held, prevented the arrival of other opposition members and beat and arrested some of the dissidents who turned out on the street for several hours waving a Cuban flag to protest.

Elizardo Sanchez of the banned Cuban Human Rights and National Reconciliation Commission also said that “the latest” news regarding the incident concerned “the use of the uniformed police and of violence almost unprecedented in recent years”.

Sanchez expressed concern over “the disproportionate violence used by the special agents of the national police and also State Security”, and emphasized that the roughly 30 demonstrators were already on the way back to their homes.

Last week, the Cuban government complained that US diplomats in Havana have been in collusion with the dissidents, including Roque, and delivered them several thousand dollars from an anti-Castro activist Santiago Alvarez, who is imprisoned in the US for weapons trafficking.

Alvarez has been the chief benefactor of fellow anti-Castro militant Luis Posada Carriles, accused of bombing a Cuban airliner in 1973, killing 73 people.

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