More Than 250 Activists Arrested During Pope’s Visit, According UNPACU /
Posted on September 24, 2015
14ymedio, Havana, 23 September — The Patriotic Union of Cuba (UNPACU)
denounced on Wednesday the arrest of 142 of its members during Pope
Francis’s visit to the island, concluded yesterday. The total number of
detainees from different organizations is between 250 and 300 activists,
the report said.
The majority of the arrests (105 arbitrarily arrested and several
beaten) was recorded in Santiago de Cuba on the last day of the stay of
the pontiff. Five other members of the organization were arrested in
Pinar del Rio, 13 were arrested in Havana, 14 Holguin and one in Guantanamo.
UNPACU says in a statement released through its website that prevented
more than two hundred activists in the East and another twenty in the
West from leaving their homes under threat of arrest.
Pope Francis said yesterday aboard the papal plane flying from the
island to the US that he had not been aware that there had been arrests
of dissidents who sought a meeting with him during his stay on the
island. However, UNPACU asserts that the Pope spoke last Sunday in
Havana with one of the members of the organization, Zacchaeus Baez
Guerrero, who identified himself to the Pope to deliver a letter and
express to him the lack of human rights in Cuba. A Univision video
records the moment when State Security struggles with the activist at
the sight of the pope and stops.
The leader of UNPACU, Jose Daniel Ferrer, and other activists such as
Berta Soler of the Ladies in White and Elizardo Sanchez, spokesman for
the Cuban Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation
(CCDHRN), reproached the Pope for failing to address in his homilies and
speeches the situation of fundamental rights in the country.
Source: More Than 250 Activists Arrested During Pope’s Visit, According
UNPACU / 14ymedio | Translating Cuba –