Cuban lawmaker: Activists ‘paid’ to organize unsanctioned LGBTI march

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A Cuban lawmaker on Saturday suggested independent activists were “paid” to organize an unsanctioned LGBTI march that took place in Havana last week.

“It’s not only religious groups, but also these so-called activists are often times paid to hold this type of event,” said Luis Ángel Adán Roble in response to questions from the Washington Blade during a panel at an LGBTQ Victory Institute conference that is taking place in the Colombian capital of Bogotá. “I am not saying that everyone who went to it were paid or anything.”

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Cleve Jones ‘dismayed’ by arrests at LGBTI march in Havana

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Cleve Jones marching at the National Equality March in 2009. (Photo by Gil Goldstein via Wikimedia Commons)

Cleve Jones said May 14 he is “dismayed” by the arrest of several people during an unsanctioned LGBTI march that took place in Havana over the weekend.

Jones, who is based in San Francisco, and Rainbow World Fund Executive Director Jeff Cotter in a statement said they “are saddened by the” Cuban government’s decision to cancel two International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia marches that were scheduled to take place in Havana and the city of Camagüey “due to pressure from anti-LGBTQ fundamentalist Christians who oppose the significant advancements that LGBTQ people have made in Cuban society.”

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Cuban LGBTQ rights groups hold unauthorized march in Havana

By : Wire Report
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HAVANA (AP) | LGBTQ-rights activists organizing on social media held an unauthorized march May 11 down eight blocks of one of Havana’s main thoroughfares before they were stopped by police.

The march was the second by a non-governmental organization in Cuba in slightly more than a month. That’s highly unusual in a country where the only legal civil society groups are de facto arms of the Communist government. Any sort of unofficial march or demonstration has long been met with a swift and overwhelming police response.

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Cuba blocks DC LGBT reporter from entering country

By : Staff Reports OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Cuban authorities on May 8 refused to allow Washington Blade International News Editor Michael K. Lavers to enter the country.

Lavers arrived at Havana’s José Marti International Airport on an American Airlines flight from Miami shortly before noon EST.

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Cuban YouTubers document LGBTI life, issues

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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SAGUA LA GRANDE, Cuba — A growing number of Cuban internet users are using YouTube to document LGBTI life and issues on the Communist island.

Nelson Julio Álvarez Mairata, who lives in Sagua la Grande, a small city on Cuba’s north central coast that is located roughly three hours east of Havana, launched his YouTube channel, Nexy J Show, in 2016.

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Cuban bars use right of admission to throw out LGBTQ people

By : Maykel González Vivero of the Washington Blade, Courtesy of the Natioan LGBT Media Association
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HAVANA — Recently private bars in Havana have used the “right of admission reserved” to keep the doors closed on LGBTI+ people. Recent incidents expose the lack of Cuban legislation to prevent discrimination and protect victims.

At midnight on July 8, while Brian Canelles and Arian Abreu were having a drink at the Efe Bar in El Vedado, Havana, they decided to take a selfie of themselves giving each other a kiss. The bouncer told them they were not allowed to take the photo and the couple was eventually kicked out because “the bar didn’t want to have a gay image.” The bouncer argued, “We’re not interested in that type of publicity, and we don’t want to get that reputation.”

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Cuba activists push for same-sex marriage

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A torrential downpour was passing over the Cuban capital on May 11 when Violeta Cardoso and her partner of 32 years, Isabel Pacheco, arrived at a coffee shop in the Vedado neighborhood.

The women soon began to speak passionately about LGBTI-specific issues with Juana Mora and Lidia Romero of Acepto, a group that advocates for marriage rights for same-sex couples in Cuba. It was sweltering inside the coffee shop because of a power outage, but the women nevertheless spoke with each other for more than an hour as they drank iced tea and coffee.

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Mariela Castro leads LGBT march in Havana

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL GAY MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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HAVANA — The daughter of Cuban President Raúl Castro on Saturday led a march through the Cuban capital that commemorated the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia.

Mariela Castro, who directs Cuba’s National Center for Sexual Education that is known by the Spanish acronym CENESEX, and more than 2,000 people marched from the Havana’s oceanfront to a pavilion that is near the Habana Libre hotel in the Vedado neighborhood.

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The VIP treatment at Havana’s most popular gay party

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL GAY MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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HAVANA — The ability of Cubans to find a way to work things out, which translates as “resolver” in Cuban Spanish, truly defies explanation. It proved particularly useful on Saturday night at Havana’s most popular gay party.

Café Cantante is a nightclub near Plaza de la Revolución that hosts Proyecto Divino, a party that features cabaret singers and other performers. It takes place every Saturday.

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