Desde Dentro de Cuba.

Distribuido por Cuba Free Press, Inc. -

06 de Abril del 2000


Santa Clara.- The State Security (SS) police released Cuba Free Press correspondent Luis Ramón Hernández Rodríguez of the Democratic Action Movement after holding him in jail in Villa Clara from April 2 to April 5.

Officials did not specify the charges against him but insinuated he was in some crime of large dimensions involving many people.

A similar situation occurred with the delegate of the Democratic Action Movement from Manicaragua, Alberto Rodríguez, who also heard insinuations of his involvement in a great conspiracy with many people. None of this is true, their organization being pro-liberty, anti-violence and non-criminal.

The members of the State Security police told Luis Ramón that they had a citizen who had identified him in a crime that they never clarified.

Perhaps they released him because the U.N. Commission on Human Rights is in session in Geneva, Switzerland and the news of the dissidents' arrest was made known as soon as it occurred.

Luis Ramón Hernández was kept in a cell that he said was "like all cells" an extremely hot box with a high window and about two meters wide and 2-1/2 meters long. The high window is made of concrete pieces through which nothing can be seen.

The "toilet" is an odoriferous hole in the floor with no water for flushing. A small amount of drinking water is provided once a day.

The cell walls are painted completely white and the ceiling has a cold light that is never turned off. The door is made totally of steel plates. It has a loophole, a small opening which the guards open so as to squeeze in the food and drinking water. Then they close it again. There is virtually no air circulation.

The breakfast consists of sugar water and a little piece of bread. At noontime, oatmeal.

No cigarettes or toothpaste is allowed. The victim was not allowed any change of clothing. The solid "bed" has an extremely thin canvas mattress; he had a sheet because he had brought it.

Agents interrogated him four times in three days. Hernández Rodríguez said waiting inside the cell for the next session and not knowing what it might bring caused him tension.

Agents took him handcuffed to his apointment with a cardiologist. When his friend Coya had appeared in the police station to inform the authorities of his doctor appointment, he told the officials that if they did not take Luis Ramón to the doctor, this news would immediately be spread worldwide. An SS officer named Darly gave the order for the medical visit.

Luis Ramón said he was embarrassed - like any honorable non-criminal - at being presented in public with handcuffs.

Nevertheless, his doctor, in the face of the officers' insistence, told them Luis Ramón definitely has a precarious heart condition and if they subjected him to too much stress it could give him another heart attack.

The guards took off the handcuffs at the exact moment when the doctor examined him and stayed with him throughout the visit. He was not left alone with his doctor and the agents took him away from the office immediately afterwards.

On the afternoon of April 5, 72 hours after his arrest, as decreed in the Cuban code of criminal procedure, the victim's wife, Mrs. Alina Becerra appeared at the SS station to ask what her husband's situation was and if she should seek a lawyer. SS agents told her she should come back the next day because there was no one to talk to her.

However, some 15 minutes later the SS freed him, apparently having been trying to cause his wife more worry by lying to her. This is said to be typical SS procedure to harass and torture dissidents.

When the agents released him, they continued to refuse to give him any reasons for the arrest.

Cuba Free Press.

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