Over a dozen "self-employed" bike-taxis and horse carriage drivers have been arrested in the town of Cardenas, Matanzas, for protesting a decision by the Castro regime that prohibits them from transiting through main thoroughfares. (They can only use secondary and back streets.)
Yet, the only group that has raised their voice in defense of these imprisoned individuals is the pro-democracy dissident group, The Ladies in White.
So where are the groups that seek to focus U.S. policy on the "self-employed"? Or do they only care to use them as a "back-door" to do business with the Castro regime?
Also, last week the Castro regime announced that travelers are not permitted to carry with them packages for third-parties. Violations will result in fines or criminal charges.
This is an effort to crack-down on "mules" that take packages to Cuba (for a fee). This merchandise is mostly for families, but also ends up in the informal market and less so in the "self-employed" market.
However, the Castro regime insists on monopolizing all packages entering the country and to exert control over the informal sector. And like any good monopoly, it simultaneously announced an increase in fees to send packages through its state agencies.
We constantly see news reports praising Raul's "reforms." So where are the news reports denouncing this sham?
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- You Forgot Havana, Mr. President
- From Within Cuba: An Analysis of the Embargo
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- WSJ: Foreign Investors Won't Liberate Cuba
- Over 1,120 Political Arrests in May
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- On the Taliban Exchange (and Alan Gross)
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