Cuba: Diaspora Bloggers Blame “Aggressive Acts” in Grandmother’s Death
Two Cuban diaspora blogs are talking about the death of a senior citizen that took place in the region of Santa Clara this past weekend. Despite the fact that the woman was in her nineties, bloggers are speculating that the elderly woman's fatal stroke may have been brought on by “violent acts of repudiation”. Pedazos de la Isla reported that:
Antonia Rodriguez, the grandmother of activist Idania Yanez Contreras died after suffering a stroke following a drastic rise in her blood pressure. According to several sources in the internal Resistance, her blood pressure spiked after several aggressive acts of repudiation occurred over a period of two days.
The post went on to give some background about the situation:
The violence erupted on Wednesday, May 16th, when about 30 human rights activists managed to reach Idania Yanez Contreras’s home in Santa Clara for a meeting about their opposition activities. Among those present was the opposition leader Jorge Luis Garcia Perez “Antunez,” who had to circumvent many police cordons to reach the house from the city of Placetas.
During the act of repudiation, the mob began shouting insults at the dissidents present, as well as making obscene gestures…Antunez published photos of these actions through Twitter. One of the most violent moments in the repudiation was when the mob started throwing stones at the house of Yanez Contreras. One of these stones penetrated the house and hit Aramilda Contreras, Yanez Contreras’s mother.
The “second day of repudiation” allegedly went like this:
The police beat several activists including Rolando Ferrer Espinosa, Maria Martinez and Barbara Portieles in the house of Damaris Moya Portieles, which is located directly across from the house of Yanez Contreras.
Yanez explains that her family actually made a decision to sneak her grandmother out and into the home of another relative who lives just a few houses down the block while the act of repudiation had still not escalated into such a violent event. On the 18th, when Antonia Rodriguez came back to the house, there were still mobs screaming obscenities at her family. Meanwhile, she had witnessed all of the other violence from the relative’s house she was staying in. Nervous for her loved ones, her blood pressure spiked. A few moments later, Antunez reported that she suffered a stroke and during the afternoon of Saturday May 19, activists reported that she had died (Twitter: @ alambradas, @ LibradoLinares, @ maritovoz).
Pedazos de la Isla also noted that:
Antunez, who been able to return to his home in Placetas, was being prevented from leaving to show support for the family of Yanez Contreras and to attend the funeral of her grandmother.
Capitol Hill Cubans placed the blame for the death of the 94-year old grandmother, squarely at the feet of the Cuban government, even posting a photograph as evidence of the “mob” presence outside the elderly woman's home:
Last week, the Castro regime ordered a two-day siege of the family home of Cuban pro-democracy leader Idania Yánez Contreras, head of the Rosa Parks Civil Rights Movement.
For 48 hours, regime-organized mobs yelled insults and hurled rocks at the home. The family was not even permitted to go purchase food.
As a result, Idania's 94-year old grandmother, Antonia Rodríguez Mirabal, suffered a stroke and died.
The Castros must feel real proud of themselves.
Pedazos de la Isla shared this sentiment, saying:
This has been another death in which the guilt lies with the Cuban dictatorship, which sends mobs to repudiate and beat the elderly, children and any Cuban who dares to think differently and in favor of freedom.
Written by Janine Mendes-Franco