Cuban protest leader says group will gather in November despite warning from prosecutor

Cuban protest leader says group will gather in November despite warning from prosecutor
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A Cuban protest leader said Thursday his group will gather for a demonstration in November despite warnings from a prosecutor that doing so could have legal ramifications.

"We are not mercenaries, nor are we receiving orders from anyone," Yunior Garcia, leader of the Archipelago group, said after a meeting with prosecutors, Reuters reported. "We are openly demonstrating a difference of opinion.”

Cuban prosecutors called protests leaders to a meeting after the Archipelago group said they were going to protest the government over curbing civil rights on Nov. 15.

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Cuban vice-prosecutor, Yaumara Angulo González, said the protest leaders were warned the demonstrations would be against the law, highlighting the group has ignored the government’s previous warning, according to Reuters.

Archipelago is organized as a Facebook group with around 20,000 members. 

The group legally requested to hold the civil rights protest but was denied by the government last week.

“The protesters ... as well as their links with some subversive organizations ... have the open intention of changing the political system in Cuba,” a letter from the government said.

Garcia said his protest will be "peaceful, civic, with nothing to do with violence."

"This is my personal decision, beyond the threats that I have received today in this building," he added.

The group said they were holding the protest despite the government’s warnings after the Human Rights Watch released a report detailing the systematic abuse Cubans faced for protests over the summer.