News and Facts about Cuba

WHEN WILL CUBA IMPROVE RELATIONS WITH ITS OWN JOURNALISTS?

WHEN WILL CUBA IMPROVE RELATIONS WITH ITS OWN JOURNALISTS?
PUBLISHED ON THURSDAY 18 DECEMBER 2014.

In the wake of the US and Cuban announcements of a resumption in the
diplomatic relations severed more than half a century ago, Reporters
Without Borders would like to draw attention to the lack of of
information in Cuba and to call for the release of imprisoned journalists.

“Now that diplomatic bridges are being built, it is high time that Cuba
improved relations with its own independent journalists, and it could
start by immediately releasing the two journalists and the who
are unjustly detained,” said Claire San Filippo, the head of the
Reporters Without Borders Americas desk.

“A thaw in relations also needs an end to threats and intimidation, and
the possibility for news providers to carry out their activities freely
and without being subjected to harassment. More than ever before, Cubans
need pluralist, independent and diversified information.”

This will pose a major challenge to the authorities in Cuba, where
freedom of information is extremely limited. The government maintains a
complete monopoly of news and information and tolerates no independent
media aside from a few Catholic Church magazines.

Only state media are permitted (national radio and TV, two daily
newspapers – Granma and Juventud Rebelde – and their local versions).
This drastically limits access to freely-reported and independent
information.

The authorities also control the coverage provided by foreign
journalists by cherry-picking who gets accreditation and by expelling
those whose reporting is regarded as overly negative.

access is very limited because of the prohibitive cost and
because it is closely controlled. Independent Cuban news websites that
are based abroad, such as Payo Libre, Hablemos Press, Cubanet, Cuba
Encuentro and Martí Noticias, cannot be accessed from within Cuba.

The authorities often blame the low Internet penetration rate on the US
but this excuse ceased to be valid when the ALBA-1 fibre-optic
cable linking Cuba to became operational, leaving a political
desire to restrict access as the only possible explanation.

As well as preventing media pluralism, the authorities continue to
persecute journalists and bloggers who criticize the regime.

The last of the journalists during the 2003 “Black Spring”
crackdown was freed in 2011, but professional journalists,
citizen-journalists and bloggers have been subjected to threats, smear
campaigns, arrests and arbitrary detention ever since then.

The authorities are currently holding two journalists – Yoenni de Jesús
Guerra García and José Antonio Torres – and the blogger Ángel
Santiesteban-Prats, who has repeatedly reported being tortured.

Cuba is ranked 170th out of 180 countries in the 2014 Reporters Without
Borders press freedom index, the lowest position of any country in the
Americas.

Source: When will Cuba improve relations with its own journalists? –
Reporters Without Borders –
http://en.rsf.org/cuba-when-will-cuba-improve-relations-18-12-2014,47403.html

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Follow Us
Visit Us On TwitterVisit Us On FacebookVisit Us On Google PlusCheck Our Feed
Donate for Servers
We run various sites in defense of human rights and need support to pay for more powerful servers. Thank you.
Cubaverdad on Twitter
Archives