|Yunisledy Lopez Rodriguez: Brutally murdered at age 23 in 2014|
The seventh entry focuses on a young woman who tried to warn a friend who was being targeted by the secret police for a violent end. They went to the authorities to make a formal complaint, but nothing happened. Four months later she was murdered in front of her children stabbed 18 times. Eight months later her friend was the victim of a brutal machete attack and nearly killed.
Previous entries in this series were about Cubans trying to change the system nonviolently. The first entry concerned Orlando Zapata Tamayo, a humble bricklayer turned courageous human rights defender who paid the ultimate price in 2010 for speaking truth to power. The second entry focused on Oswaldo Payá Sardiñas, a Catholic lay activist, nonviolence icon, husband, father of three and the founder of a Cuban opposition movement that shook up the Castro regime with a petition drive demanding that human rights be respected and recognized in Cuba. This action and speaking truth to power led to his extrajudicial killing in 2012. The third entry focused on one of the great crimes of the Castro regime that has been well documented by international human rights organizations and reported on ABC News Nightline that claimed the lives of 37 men, women, and children. They were trying to flee the despotism in Cuba to live in freedom and were extrajudicially executed. In the fourth focused on an act of state terrorism when two planes were shot down on a Saturday afternoon at 3:21 and 3:27 on February 24, 1996 over international airspace while engaged in a search and rescue flight for Cuban rafters killing four humanitarians. Their planes were destroyed by air-to-air missiles fired by a Cuban MiG-29 aircraft on the orders of Raul and Fidel Castro.
In the fifth focused on Amnesty International prisoner of conscience Wilman Villar Mendoza who died on hunger strike protesting his unjust imprisonment on January 19, 2012 at the age of 31 left behind two little girls, a young wife and grieving mother. The sixth entry focused on one of the many non-Cuban victims of Cuban communism. Joachim Løvschall was studying Spanish in Havana in the spring of 1997. He was gunned down by a soldier of the Castro regime in Havana, Cuba twenty years ago. The identity of the soldier was never revealed to Joachim's family. No one was ever brought to justice.
Yunisledy Lopez Rodriguez was just 23 years old, the mother of two small children and she lived in Vista Alegre, in the Municipality of Majabiquoa in Las Tunas, Cuba. She had suffered harassment, state security agents had wanted to evict her and her children from their home for her activism in the Civics and Truth movement.
Yunisledy found out that her then current boyfriend "Ruber" had been given the order to kill Cuban dissident Sirley Avila Leon by state security. Yunisledy immediately informed Sirley Avila Leon of the danger and on May 21, 2014 when Sirley's home was set on fire formally complained to the police. She reported that her partner had told her that he would murder Sirley and that through the above action had attempted to carry it out. The police never made a pronouncement on the matter and did nothing. Afterwards "Ruber" threatened Yunisledy and told her that if she did not want to be killed that she should join him in Camaguey where he had been given the possibility to work as a "cuenta propista" as a reward for carrying out his murder attempt against Sirley Avila Leon and to give the impression that he was in a prison elsewhere. [This is an aspect of the job sector opportunities that Amnesty missed in their recent report.]
She denounced the new threat to the police but no action was taken against him and he went away. After two months approximately September 20-21, 2014 the father of her young son appears at her home and tells her that he'll kill her. But instead rapes her in front of her children and leaves.
Immediately she went to the police and made a complaint because was supposedly a prison escapee, but the police take no action. They tell her not to worry that he is already back in prison. Yunisledy calls Sirley on September 24, 2014 and tells her that they both knew why he was being sent to kill her. Yunisledy asks Sirley to please care for her children because she had no police protection.
On September 26, 2014 while preparing food for her children the individual known as "El Tejon" entered the house and stabbed her 18 times in front of her two children. This was done to give the appearance of a crime of passion.
Cuban human rights defender, Sirley Avila Leon, was the target of a brutal machete attack on May 24, 2015 that she miraculously survived in order to provide the information about what happened to her and to this young woman, mother of two orphans.
|Cuban state security engineered machete attack against Sirley Ávila León in 2015|