Castro daughter, blogger clash on Twitter

2011-11-09 11:38

Havana - Social media moved into a new realm in technologically backward Cuba on Tuesday when Cuban President Raul Castro's controversial daughter Mariela began tweeting and quickly got into the Twitter equivalent of a shouting match with dissident blogger Yoani Sanchez.

Mariela Castro called Sanchez and her compatriots "despicable parasites" in a brief exchange that may have been the first direct confrontation, verbal or otherwise, between dissidents and a member of the Castro family after years of mutual animosity.

Sanchez, who regularly criticises the lack of freedoms in communist Cuba in her internationally known "Generation Y" blog, touched off the dispute by sending tweets that welcomed Mariela Castro to the "plurality of Twitter" where "no one can shut me up, deny me permission to travel or block entrance".

"When will we Cubans be able to come out of other closets?" she asked, alluding to Mariela Castro's championing of gay rights as head of Cuba's National Centre for Sex Education.

"Tolerance is total or is it not?" Sanchez tweeted.

Castro, 49, replied coolly with an obtuse putdown, saying, "Your focus of tolerance reproduces the old mechanisms of power. To improve your 'services' you need to study".

But later, after apparently receiving a number of tweets from other dissidents, Castro lashed out.

"Despicable parasites: did you receive the order from your employers to respond to me in unison and with the same predetermined script? Be creative," she wrote, reflecting the contempt Cuban leaders have for dissidents and the belief that they work for their longtime enemy the United States.

Gay rights

They can barely hide their rancour toward Sanchez in particular, but do not mention her or other dissidents by name. Despite having an international following, Sanchez is little known in Cuba where Internet access is limited.

Just as she is at the vanguard in Cuba in supporting gay rights, Mariela Castro appears to be the first in the Castro family to publicly and directly engage in tweeting.

Her father, who is 80, and her uncle, former leader Fidel Castro, 85, have Twitter accounts, but they are used only to post stories and columns from Cuba's state-run media.

After her exchange with Sanchez, she posted a link to an interview about her recent trip to Holland, where she toured Amsterdam's famous red-light district.

She raised eyebrows by saying there that she knew of Cubans who would prostitute themselves with labourers just so they could take a bath.

In a tweet, Mariela Castro said there had been "manipulations, like always" of her comments.

Read more on:    raul castro  |  cuba  |  gay rights
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

An uncomfortable election

The latter few weeks of election 2014, have seen South Africans reeling from an assault on their comfort zone when it comes to voting, writes Daniel Silke

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Thursday Sir Lowry's Pass - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Old Sir Lowrys Pass Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Bezweni Road
  • Thursday Cape Town - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Buitengracht Street
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Waterkant Street
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Samsung Galaxy Y

The Samsung Y (Young) is tiny but powerful with Android...

From R1499.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may find yourself putting in that extra effort on looking good and making an impression. ...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.