Contacted by phone at her home, the director of 14ymedio, Yoani Sánchez, explained the circumstances of the arrest of her husband, Reinaldo Escobar, and of several other people this Tuesday in Havana. She is under house arrest. Patrol car No. 507 is stationed in front of the building where she lives, while four plainclothes offices are controlling the building entrances. Sánchez has confirmed that in the evening hours of Tuesday a second patrol car has been stationed in the back of the residential building.
Reinaldo Escobar was arrested when he left the building where he lives in the company of the activist Eliécer Ávila, founder of the group “Somos Más” (We are More). Both were handcuffed and put in a patrol car waiting in front of the building in the Havana neighborhood of Neuvo Vedado. Reinaldo’s daughter, Luz, who was with her father, has not been arrested, but a State Security agency told her, “We are not going to let you leave.” The same official visited Luz Escobar’s home yesterday to warn her not to go near the Plaza of the Revolution today, where the artist Tania Bruguera has scheduled a performance titled “Tatlin’s Whisper #6” for 3:00 in the afternoon, to demand freedom of expression for Cuban’s citizens.
Activist Omar Fayut of the opposition group Unión Patriótica de Cuba (UNPACU) was able to reach the Plaza of the Revolution together with other leaders from this group. He has confirmed to 14ymedio from the Plaza that there are tens of people gathered, some of them from opposition groups and others are young people who learned about the demonstration this past weekend when they were gathered at G Street, a popular spot for hipsters in Havana.
Fayut describes a heavy presence of police officers at the scene but not repressive measures have been taken by them in the Plaza, given that foreign correspondents are present with their cameras and microphones.
Also arrested were photographer Claudio Fuentes and his companion Eva Baquero. Social networks also inform us of the arrests of Antonio Rodiles, José Díaz Silva, Raúl Borges, Lady in White Lourdes Esquivel, and of the 14ymedio reporter Víctor Ariel González.
Members of the #YOTAMBIENEXIJO [I also demand] platform issued a press release denouncing their inability to contact Bruguera. The organization explained that the artist’s telephone number is blocked and expressed their fear, given the arrests of the leaders of civic organizations currently underway.