Monday, February 28, 2011

Pro-govt crowd harass Cuban rights activists

Pro-govt crowd harass Cuban rights activists

HAVANA — The Cuban government released a political prisoner even as some
200 pro-government activists harassed the wives of other jailed
dissidents at a protest march.
"Get out, get out, you pack of worms," were among insults pro-government
activists chanted at the Ladies in White group pushing for the release
of their loved ones by the only one-party communist regime in the Americas.
The Ladies, winners of the 2005 Sakharov rights prize from the European
Parliament, were marching in white as they do most Sundays when they
were targeted by counter-demonstrators.
The pro-government crowd also chanted at the second secretary at the US
Interests Section, Lowell Dale Lawton, who was following the Ladies'
protest at a distance.
"Come pick up your rats!" the Cuban government supporters chanted at the
US diplomat.
"They were out marching ... and now that mob has them surrounded," said
Angel Moya, a former political prisoner freed just 10 days ago.
Meanwhile, Cuba on Sunday also freed dissident Diosdado Gonzalez, 48, an
electrician by trade, was one of six dissidents left from a group of 75
imprisoned in a 2003 crackdown.
Gonzalez, who is a member of the outlawed Peace, Democracy and Freedom
Party, went on several hunger strikes while in prison, according to his
wife Alejandrina Garcia, a member of the Ladies in White.
The harassment of the women's group came less than a day after state
media revealed that it had been infiltrated by a state security agent
posing as a friendly, independent journalist.
The agent, Carlos Serpa, claimed the Ladies in White were funded by
anti-Castro groups in Miami and the US diplomatic mission here. A US
Interests Section functions in place of an embassy as the two countries
do not have full diplomatic ties.

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