On Eve of Obama's Trip, 9 Cuban Rafters Dead and 209 Dissidents Arrested

Sunday, March 20, 2016
Cuba's reality to mull over as President Obama arrives in Havana today, embraces Castro's regime and green-lights hotel deals with its military and intelligence services.

From AP:

"Nine Cuban migrants died at sea and 18 others were rescued by a cruise ship after their 30-foot boat was found about 130 miles from the Florida coast, the U.S. Coast Guard said.

The migrants were severely dehydrated when they were found Friday and said they had been at sea 22 days. The bodies of those who didn’t make it were placed overboard, said Coast Guard Petty Officer Mark Barney. The survivors were in bad condition."

From 14ymedio:

"On Saturday, 209 Cuban dissidents were arrested, as various opposition groups demanded the release of political prisoners. Most of the arrested were members of the Cuban Patriotic Union (UNPACU), according to its leader, Jose Daniel Ferrer.

Many of the detentions took place in the eastern provinces as dissidents publicly demanded, 'freedom for political prisoners, respect for human rights and an end to repression against The Ladies in White,' said Ferrer."