HAVANA (Reuters) – U.S. social media agency Twitter Inc has blocked the accounts of Cuban Communist Occasion Chief Raul Castro, his daughter Mariela Castro and Cuba’s prime state-run media retailers, a transfer the Cuban Union of Journalists denounced as “huge censorship”.
FILE PHOTO: Cuba’s First Secretary of the Communist Occasion and former President Raul Castro (L) talks with Cuba’s International Minister Bruno Rodriguez throughout an occasion with Russian International Minister Sergei Lavrov (not pictured) on the Capitol, in Havana, Cuba July 24, 2019. REUTERS/Fernando Medina/File Photograph
Dozens of accounts of journalists for Cuban state-run media in addition to the official account for the Communications Ministry had been additionally blocked within the crackdown late on Wednesday.
Twitter didn’t clarify or forewarn of the measure, state-run media wrote on their web sites. The corporate didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.
The Cuban Union of Journalists mentioned the platform had suspended particular person accounts prior to now which had been recovered.
The transfer got here simply as President Miguel Diaz-Canel was addressing the nation on state-run TV, warning of an vitality disaster because of U.S. sanctions.
“What’s new right here is the large scope of this act of cybernetic warfare, clearly deliberate, that goals to restrict the liberty of expression of Cuban establishments and residents and to silence the leaders of the revolution” it mentioned in an announcement.
Some unbiased Cuban journalists commented paradoxically on the actual fact officers of a authorities which has a monopoly on public areas and conventional media in a one social gathering state had been complaining of censorship.
Impartial journalism in Cuba is tolerated however not authorized and the web sites of a number of different retailers which might be crucial of the federal government are blocked on the island. Locals should use digital non-public networks to entry them.
“Official Cuban press discovers ‘freedom of expression’ due to Twitter,” wrote 14ymedio, the digital information outlet run by distinguished dissident Yoani Sanchez.
Cuba was featured on the checklist of 10 most censored nations worldwide launched this week by the Committee to Defend Journalists (CPJ), headquartered in New York.
Lengthy one of many world’s least linked nations, Cuba has been quickly increasing internet entry in recent times, introducing cellular web final December.
Cuban officers piled onto Twitter final 12 months after Diaz-Canel opened an account and referred to as for them to be extra in contact with the folks. Some do reply to citizen feedback however critics complain most simply retweet authorities statements.
Reporting by Sarah Marsh; Enhancing by David Gregorio