Library Visitor Threatened by (Castro's Secret) Police

Posted: 9/10/2006 2:17:00 PM
Author: Liannis Merino Aguilar
Source: This report is from

Library Visitor Threatened...
by Liannis Merino Aguilar

Note from Librarians for Fairness: Friends of Cuban Libraries is an excellent organization that supports the independent Cuban librarians who have defied Castro's dictatorship by opening libraries where a variety of opinions, instead of only the Communist point of view, can be accessed. A number of these courageous librarians, some of whom are now in very bad health, are languishing in Castro's prisons. Outrageously, the American Library Association, which is heavily influenced by the ultra-radical leftists in its ranks, has NOT been supporting these outstanding, freedom-loving professionals.

HOLGUIN, Cuba, August 11, 2006 (Liannis Meriño Aguilera, - One of the patrons who visits the Gastón Baquero Independent Library, located in the city of Banes, was intercepted by the police on August 5, according to the library director, Martha Díaz Rondón.

The officials asked the patron for his identity card and made a note of it; they told the library visitor that this information would be sent to the chief of his zone of residence, so that an official warning would be issued, and that he would be prosecuted for the crime of "social dangerousness" if he continues visiting the library.

The Gastón Baquero Library is well-established in the community, and a large number of people visit it to find reliable and uncensored information, but the secret police send agents to harass people visiting the library.

Cuba's independent libraries have developed into a source of information for members of the civil society. In the libraries readers can enjoy literature without restrictions or censorship, and for this reason the government confiscates their books and uses repressive measures to try to prevent people from visiting them.

The library director, Ms. Díaz Rondón, stated that this isn't the first time such intimidation has occurred. On previous occasions readers have been photographed and videotaped while entering and leaving the library. She said this is a maneuver used by the secret police to prevent people in Banes from accessing this kind of information; the police intimidate patrons in an effort to prevent them from returning to the library.

Díaz Rondón declared: "The Gastón Baquero Library is located at 2007 Céspedes Street, between Cárdenas Avenue and General Marrero St., in the city of Banes, and it will continue offering services to the public whether the current government likes it or not."