MercoPress, en Español

Montevideo, October 24th 2021 - 08:57 UTC

 

 

EU condemns Cuba for detention of leading dissident Jose Daniel Ferrer

Friday, November 29th 2019 - 08:51 UTC
Full article
Authorities arrested Ferrer, 49, two months ago on charges of assault, which his relatives and UNPACU said was an excuse to silence him. Authorities arrested Ferrer, 49, two months ago on charges of assault, which his relatives and UNPACU said was an excuse to silence him.

The European parliament joined the United States on Thursday in condemning Cuba's detention and reported mistreatment of leading dissident Jose Daniel Ferrer, whom the Communist government in Havana calls a US-backed counter-revolutionary.

The move came a day after Cuban state television aired a report including footage from hidden cameras in Ferrer's jail cell apparently showing him in good health and falsely accusing a guard of hurting him.

Activists from his opposition organisation the Patriotic Union of Cuba (UNPACU) said the footage could have been staged or doctored.

Authorities arrested Ferrer, 49, two months ago on charges of assault, which his relatives and UNPACU said was an excuse to silence him.

“They are slandering my son and so preparing the way to condemn him,” Amelia Garcia Vega, Ferrer's 76-year-old mother who lives in Florida, said by phone. “He is innocent. My son is not a delinquent and does not attack anyone.”

While the European Union parliamentary resolution is non-binding and will unlikely derail the bloc's drive to normalise relations with Cuba, it underscores concerns about what some activists say is worsening repression in the one-party state.

The resolution states that lawmakers are concerned about “persecution, harassment, attacks against peaceful dissidents, independent journalists, human rights defenders and political opposition in Cuba”.

It notes an EU cooperation agreement with Cuba “includes a provision to suspend the agreement in the event of human rights violations”.

Cuba says the Trump administration is using Ferrer to undermine the government as part of its attempt to overthrow socialism in Latin America.

It accused the top US diplomat in the island, Mara Tekach, of directing his activities. Wednesday's TV report showed her visiting Ferrer's home and said she was “inciting him to disrespect the forces of public order”.

The US government has denied the allegations and said it is simply carrying out a mission to support Cuba's rights defenders.

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules

Commenting for this story is now closed.
If you have a Facebook account, become a fan and comment on our Facebook Page!