Authorities in Cuba must immediately and unconditionally release a political activist imprisoned solely because of his political views, Amnesty International said as it adopted Iván Fernández Depestre a “Prisoner of Conscience”.
The 40 year-old political activist, was arrested on 30 July in the central province of Santa Clara as he peacefully participated in a public event to commemorate the anniversary of the death of Cuban national hero Frank País.
“Iván Fernández Depestre is being held only because he holds opinions contrary to those of the Cuban authorities. He must be released immediately and unconditionally,” said Javier Zúñiga, Special Advisor for Amnesty International.
Mr Depestre was charged with “dangerousness”, a pre-emptive measure defined as the “special proclivity of a person to commit crimes” after he was accused of “meeting with antisocial persons”. He hand no access to a lawyer during his trial and was sentenced to three years in jail on 2 August. He is currently on hunger strike.