The leader of a Cuban dissident group who left the island for Spain said on Thursday that the communist government was “behaving like an abusive husband” towards its people.
Activist and playwright Unier García Aguilera arrived in Madrid with his wife Dayana Prieto on Wednesday, two days after police surrounded their home in Havana to prevent them from participating in a national protest planned by an opposition group that imprisoned dissidents. seeking release. And more freedom for Cubans.
Leaders of the archipelago, the opposition organisation, announced it would stage a “civilian march for change”, a mass demonstration on Monday that the Cuban government described as “counter-revolutionary” and said it was a US interventionist plan. was part of.
At a news conference on Thursday in Madrid, García said, “The relationship between the Cuban government and the people is like a marriage that has failed. The government is treating people like abusive husbands.”
“It is a dictatorial and brutal tyranny,” he said.
On the eve of the planned demonstration, police and government supporters surrounded his home to prevent García and other activists and independent journalists from leaving.
Garcia said on Thursday that the Cuban government had cut off his telephone and social media access.
“My house is constantly monitored by people. They left pigeons with their heads cut off outside my house to stop me from participating in the demonstration,” he told reporters.
García argues that the Cuban government allowed him to leave the country only so that he would not become a “symbol of resistance”.
“The regime needed to silence me, turn me into a non-person,” he told reporters.
He said that he had come to Spain so that he could be free to speak out against the Cuban government.
“I just have my voice. I couldn’t keep quiet. So I came to Spain,” he said, adding that he wanted to return to the island in the future.
The archipelago blamed government pressure for the failure of the demonstration.
It said that “over 100 activists were arbitrarily detained, forcibly disappeared, under acts of denial, violence, threats, coercion and hate speech.”
Garcia said fear of reprisal prevented people from attending the demonstrations on Monday.
“The problem is fear, but we have social media, which they can’t control,” he said.
call for condemnation of oppression
Garcia said the US economic sanctions against Cuba had helped the communist government, which he claimed was used for propaganda purposes.
He speculated that if opinion polls were allowed, they would show that the government had lost the support of the people.
He called on the international community to condemn the repression in his country.
“What is important is that the international community stops looking the other way,” Garcia said.
The architect said he was unable to contact Garcia, who told his Facebook page on Wednesday that he had left Cuba and was in Spain with his wife.
While protests in Havana were suppressed, Cuban expatriates took to the streets in Mexico City and other cities in Latin America in solidarity with their compatriots.
Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez said Cuban opposition groups had failed in their efforts to organize Monday’s demonstration.
“It is clear that what I called a failed operation — a political communications operation conducted and financed by the United States government with the use of millionaire money and internal agents — was a complete failure,” Rodriguez said in an interview Wednesday with The Associated Press. Was.” ,
“I wish they [the United States] will allow Americans their freedom to travel and they can come to Cuba and see reality firsthand and discover the deception to which they are often subjected, maintaining an obsolete, genocidal policy. with a purpose that violates human rights and international law and causes suffering among the Cuban people,” he said.
García’s arrival in the Spanish capital means that Cuba’s dissident movement has moved to Madrid in much the same way that Venezuela’s opposition leaders have.
Venezuelan dissident Leopoldo López has made Madrid his home since his dramatic exit from Venezuela in 2020. He was staying at the Spanish Embassy in Caracas before making a dash for Colombia, from where he went to Spain.
Some information for this report has been obtained from The Associated Press.