Cuban dissident Yoanni Sanchez lamented the growing repression of dissent in the island nation. The journalist said yesterday at the International Book Fair in Guadalajara, Mexico that since last year’s mass protests, the government has been taking “oppressive rage” against those who think differently. There are more than a thousand political prisoners in Cuba.
The founder of the 14ymedio website warned of the consequences of the criminal law reform, which took effect on Thursday. Sanchez said the “primary victims” of the tightening of the law are the independent press and the “free flow of news”.
The new penal code classifies a range of activities that the state considers disruptive and harmful to society as crimes. According to human rights organizations, this is intended to suppress dissenting opinions. Sanchez said protesting against the government should be “criminalized” under offenses such as obscenity.
In July 2021, thousands of people demonstrated in dozens of Cuban cities. They were reacting to Cuba’s worst economic crisis in nearly 30 years. The protests were violently suppressed at that time.
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