Alberto Yoan Arego Pulido

* 1988

  • “I wish gay marriages were possible in Cuba, but they have it difficult. The Cubans have it complicated, because the whole issue of the LGBT community in Cuba is monopolized by Raúl Castro’s daughter, who is Mariela Castro. In Cuba, in the media ‘Juventud Rebelde’ [official newspaper of the communist regime] appeared, in this communist newspaper ‘Juventud Rebelde’, I remember exactly - 20 lines only, it was the daughter of Raúl Castro, who came out with just 20 lines in 2019, mentioning this event in Cuba, like carnival - and with this, all rights in Cuba are supposedly given. This came out in 2019. At that time, I participated on an event held by CENESEX [the National Center for Sex Education in Cuban dedicated to education and research on human sexuality], at CENESEX they attended me, and I even tried to enter to the community they have there, but at the end I realized that it was an official community, very closed and close with the regime. But sure, they have their space for debates, and I went to one. I got to see Fox TV for the first time, at a CENESEX debate. But once you are here in Spain, you realize, that in Cuba we have absolutely nothing of rights.”

  • “There is an institution, that controls official newspapers, also ‘Juventud Rebelde’ and ‘El Trabajador’ and all these media…once we had a class there, I don’t remember if it was some common class or something else. And one student, who was just finishing his studies of journalism, I was just in the first year, I think, it occurred to him to ask, in that seminar, why we do not have a debate with Yoanni Sánchez? At that time, it was like unreal…well Yoanni was known for her blog ‘Generation Y’ [in Spanish Generación Y; philologist and journalist criticizing the Cuban Government]. But of course, to propose during a class of the official communist periodicals to do something about Yoanni Sánchez. At the end, this student was expelled, and we never saw him again. Many friends from the faculty also had these ideas, that they wanted to fight the Cuban regime in a different way, but no, they did not achieve anything.”

  • “Well, I would love to dream that Cuba, in a few years, would be free and would change, that hopefully tomorrow everything would pass, but we have been hearing this story for a long time now. When Fidel Castro died [Fidel Castro, after his victory in the Cuban Revolution against the Fulgencio Batista dictatorship in 1959, was president and prime minister of Cuba] in 2016, the situation stayed the same. Everybody was declaring: ‘Yes, finally Cuba is changing,’ emigrants in Miami celebrated: ’Come here, let us celebrate.’ Unfortunately, nothing changed, what a horror, situation did not change. Yes, there are some positives, for example changes through the social media. But the issue of social media, well, the thing is that the Cuban Government at some point wanted to block the internet in Cuba, I do not think they will realize it, because they would take away too many opportunities that can be earned by being present on social media and internet itself. Because ‘Mesas Redondas’ would knock down, ‘Cuba Debate’, ‘Juventud Rebelde’ [official newspapers of the communist regime], on Twitter, on Facebook, anywhere.”

  • “A private independent newspaper is interested in other topics, different topics. ‘El País’ is considered a left-wing oriented newspaper in Spain, although the most leftists in Spain do not count it as a left oriented, they see it more on the right side of the political spectrum, but rightists see it more on the left side, it is very strange. But of course, the good thing about ‘El País’ is, that it is an independent media that does is not possessed by any political party. Although people say that ‘El Sol’ [another newspaper in Spain] controls it, that PP [Popular Party] controls it, that IBEX 35 [the main benchmark index of the Spanish stock market] controls it. But this freedom, that you are given in ‘El País’, that you can choose your own topics, I did not experience in Cuba. In Cuba you can dedicate yourself only to the topic of the Museum of the Revolution, the Portal Museum of Cuba, or the Seal Museum project, topics extremely boring. You ask yourself, who the hell is interested in these things? In the end, they publish your articles, but with really inconsequential topics.”

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    Cuba, 31.08.2020

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“Being a journalist in Cuba has many limitations.”

Alberto Yoan Arego Pulido, an independent journalist and defender of human rights was born in Cuba in 1988. Since his childhood, he knew he wanted to be a journalist. He studied communications at the University of Havana [Universidad de La Habana], where he had to attend an obligatory internship in the official media of the communist regime - such as “Granma” or “Juventud Rebelde .“ Because of the existing homophobia in Cuba and journalistic censorship, he emigrated to Spain in 2010. He graduated from the University of Sevilla [Universidad de Sevilla] in 2015, and continued on to gain a master’s degree at the International University of Andalusia [Universidad Internacional de Andalucía] and later at the School of Journalism of the UAM-El País [Escuela de Periodismo de la UAM-El País]. After finishing his studies in 2018, he collaborated with the blog “CiberCuba” in Spain. At first, he had to choose article topics with extreme caution since his family was still living in Cuba. Because of his journalistic activities in Spain, they faced continuous threats from the Communist government. Today, he works in “Diario de Cuba and actively supports the LGBT movement.” Alberto resides in Madrid with his partner, whom he married in 2020. His parents and his brother emigrated to the United States of America. His mission is to represent the voice of Cubans through independent international newspapers.