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Twitter blocks accounts of Raúl Castro and Cuban state-run media outlets

Featured Twitter has blocked the account of the Cuban Communist party leader Raúl Castro. Twitter has blocked the account of the Cuban Communist party leader Raúl Castro.
Twitter on Wednesday blocked the accounts of the Cuban Communist party leader Raúl Castro, his daughter Mariela Castro as well as Cuba’s top state-run media outlets, a move the Cuban Union of Journalists denounced as “massive censorship”.

This was just before a televised speech given by President Miguel Diaz-Canel, where he and other government officials outlined the response to the intensification of the U.S. economic warfare against the country.

The accounts include Granma, Mesa Redonda, CubaDebate, Radio Rebelde, and accounts of many Cuban journalists. As is typical when Twitter suspends users, all of them were blocked on the specious grounds of "violating Twitter rules", without any justification of that false claim.

The Union of Cuban Journalists denounced the act as massive censorship: "We demand the immediate re-establishment of the blocked accounts that, in no case, have violated Twitter policies, while the platform flagrantly tramples on the rights of communicators, prevents them from carrying out their work and tries to muzzle a first-rate news event in our country."

Rene Gonzalez 460Also suspended was the account of Cuban Five Hero René González, who is very active in Twitter, including in defense of Palestine and Venezuela. Early this month, for example, González used Twitter to promote an interview with him in the American Herald Tribune entitled "The Colonization of Palestine Was and Still Is an Ongoing Criminal Enterprise".

Using the Facebook account of his spouse, Olga Salanueva, René issued the following statement (translated from Spanish):

"My Twitter account has also been locked. Twenty-one years after our arrests, the empire uses the same methods that the prosecutor's office applied to hide the truth, this time at the hands of a conglomerate that boasts of representing what they euphemistically call the "democratization of information. ...
 
"With social media or without social media, we will continue to build socialism. The order of the day is unity and resistance, with the cheerful and creative spirit that characterizes us. Trump will pass as others have, and we will bid him farewell as we are celebrating new anniversaries of the Revolution."
 
We join with Cuba, its leaders and Cuban journalists in denouncing this act of aggression against Cuba, the truth and the power of people everywhere to convey facts and opinions, to fight for peace and justice around the world. Restore the suspended Twitter accounts!

Twitter did not explain or forewarn of the measure, state-run media wrote on their websites. The company did not immediately reply to a request for comment.

The Cuban Union of Journalists said the platform had suspended individual accounts in the past which had been recovered.

“What is new here is the massive scope of this act of cybernetic warfare, clearly planned, that aims to limit the freedom of expression of Cuban institutions and citizens and to silence the leaders of the revolution,” it said in a statement.

Cuba was featured on the list of 10 most censored countries worldwide released this week by the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), headquartered in New York.

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  • Countries: Cuba

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