The decision of the Cuban authorities to withdraw press credentials from the EFE Agency team on the island last night, on the eve of the banned civic rally on Monday 15 to demand political change, triggered a chain reaction of politicians and organizations. To defend the freedom of the press and press information.
Today, the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs summoned the Chargé d’Affairs of the Cuban Embassy in Madrid, the Head of the Commission in the absence of an ambassador, to request clarifications about this measure taken by Cuba for the first time towards Efe. An agency whose accreditation was not recorded on another occasion with an international news agency.
In addition, the Spanish Embassy in Havana is making arrangements with the Cuban authorities to return credentials to the Effie journalists so that they can do their work, official sources said.
The heads of the International Press Center in Cuba this Saturday urgently called on the currently accredited Efe team in Havana – three editors, a cameraman and a TV camera – to inform them of the withdrawal of their credentials, without clarifying whether the measure was temporary or permanent. .
This ruling was adopted one and a half months after the accreditation of the editorial coordinator at Efe in Havana was withdrawn.
The island authorities warned Effie’s team that he would no longer be able to carry out his journalistic work, and they did not want to explain the exact reasons for making this decision.
Effie’s head, Gabriela Canas, said she hopes the Cuban government will “reconsider” the return of press credits that were withdrawn to the journalists of this medium.
“The Cuban authorities have withdrawn the credits from the Efe Noticias team in Havana. We hope the government will reconsider. The Efe Agency is an objective and responsible media that has been reporting on the island for more than 40 years and does not understand the reasons behind this action,” Cañas wrote on Twitter .
Former Efe chief Fernando Garry also described the measure on Twitter as “terrible news for Cuba, Spain and freedom.”
The Editorial Board of EFE, the body that oversees whistleblowers in this medium, expressed support for the workers of its delegation in Havana and demanded that their press credentials be returned so that they can do their work without restrictions.
The board, made up of five EFE journalists selected by their colleagues to defend the agency’s principles of independence and public service, sent a letter to the professionals in its Havana office affected by this measure by the Cuban authorities, with a “solidarity hug”.
The European Union on Sunday demanded “clarifications” from Cuban authorities after the EFE team in Havana withdrew its press credentials, which it believed could mean a “serious violation of freedom of expression”.
“We have seen the information. We are investigating the matter and we are seeking clarifications from the Cuban authorities and we are in contact with Efe,” spokeswoman for the EU’s High Representative for Foreign Policy, Josep Borrell, Nabila Masrali, told EFE.
The International Federation of Journalists also condemned this measure as an “unacceptable attack on media freedom.”
On Twitter, Reporters Without Borders urged the reinstatement of EFE accreditation in Cuba and asked the Spanish government to mediate, in addition to warning that it would closely monitor the safety of EFE’s Cuban journalists.
The Spanish Federation of Journalists’ Unions (FAPE) also requested the mediation of Pedro Sanchez’s government for Cuba to “reconsider” this measure.
In a note, the federation “categorically rejects” this Cuban government’s decision, saying it is a “clear violation of international standards relating to freedom of the press” and asks the Spanish government “to carry out such mediation efforts as it deems appropriate so that Cuba can reconsider the measure.”
“This measure is an assault on freedom of expression and the media and attempts to prevent Efe journalists from continuing to cover the situation in Cuba with the professionalism, rigor and impartiality with which the Spanish Agency has always worked,” said Chief. FAPE, Nemesio Rodriguez.
ACM International Women’s Communication Network “strongly” condemned the decision of the Cuban government and from Rome, the World Association of Women Journalists and Writers (AMMPE) asked its partners to “make their voice heard” in the face of what happened. It was considered a “serious attack on freedom of the press.”
“We ask our partners around the world, especially in Latin America, to make their voices heard before this action, which we view as a serious attack on press freedom,” adds AMMPE, which was created in 1969 in Mexico City and is currently based in Rome.
The Association of International Correspondents of Chile (ACPI) has expressed its solidarity with EFE “in the face of the unjustified violation of the freedom of the press – a fundamental right – suffered by its professionals in Cuba”.
Several international media, such as Reuters or Euronews, have reported the withdrawal of credits from the EFE in Cuba.