Human rights lobbyists say pro-Government mobs in Cuba have launched an attack on critics organising marches in Santiago, the island’s second largest city.
President of the Cuban Committee for Human Rights and National Reconciliation, Elizardo Sánchez Santa Cruz says the attacks, the third in as many weeks, marked a relatively rare use of physical violence against the dissidents.
He says the new wave of attacks has concerned activists and has blamed the violence on President Raul Castro.
Former political prisoner, José Daniel Ferrer Garcia said the worst violence came at the end of efforts by government opponents to stage street marches demanding the release of all political prisoners.
Mr Ferrer said about 20 members of Ladies in White, an organization of women relatives of political prisoners, were punched and kicked by a government-organized mob as they left mass at the Santiago cathedral.