SEP (US) demands the release of Frank García Hernández from house arrest by the Cuban government

The Socialist Equality Party (US) demands the immediate release of Frank García Hernández from house arrest by the Cuban government. García Hernández, a self-avowed Marxist associated with the Comunistas Blog collective, was arrested Sunday during historic protests against the economic crisis and the worsening of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Anti-government protesters march in Havana, Cuba, Sunday, July 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Eliana Aponte, file)

As the Comunistas blog post concerning the detention of García Hernández and other socialists during Sunday’s protests makes clear, the thousands who came out across the country were “not solely artists and intellectuals,” but embraced the widest layers of the population. Other Cuban leftists detained include Leonardo Romero Negrín, a young physics student from the University of Havana, Marco Antonio Perez Fernandez, a high school student, Maikel González Vivero, director of the magazine Tremenda nota and Mel Herrera, a trans activist, all of whom identify as socialists.

Although his comrades from the Comunistas blog reported to La Izquierda Diario that García Hernández had been released from detention on Monday, July 12, he remains under house arrest and under tight political observation.

Despite the substantial differences we have with García Hernández on questions of history and political strategy, the ICFI considers the arrest of García Hernández a fundamental attack on democratic rights, and we oppose it entirely. The move by the government to arrest García Hernández shows the Cuban authorities to be extremely worried about the possibility of Cuban workers challenging them from the left.

Furthermore, the attack on someone associated with Trotskyism has historic implications in Cuba, where Trotsky’s assassin, Ramón Mercader, was given the warmest reception by Fidel Castro and Ché Guevara after Mercader’s release from a Mexican prison in 1960.