UPDATED, Aug. 17, 2010 — Régis Iglesias Ramírez was released from prison in August 2010 under a deal reached by Spain, the Catholic Church and the Castro dictatorship.
Régis Iglesias Ramírez is a rock and roll rebel.
A fan of the Rolling Stones, Iglesias, 37, began listening to the beat of his own heart as a teen-ager, after he traveled with his parents to Japan in the early 1980s. Even at that young age, according to a story by Cuban journalist Shelyn Rojas, he returned with a deep pain his soul for his country and a sense of rebellion he expressed by growing his hair long and listening to the music of Mick, Keith and the boys.
Later, around 1991, Iglesias, a writer and poet, joined with Oswaldo Payá Sardiñas and the Christian Liberation Movement (MLC), later serving as the group's spokesman and a coordinator for the Varela Project.
In March 2003, Iglesias was one of several MLC activists and other dissidents arrested during the "black spring" crackdown. Convicted of "acts against the independence or the territorial integrity of the state," Iglesias was sentenced to 18 years in prison.
One of the surest indicators of the repressive nature of the Castro regime is the jailing of more than 300 political prisoners. To illustrate that reality, Uncommon Sense each week profiles one prisoner. There also is a Political Prisoner archive on the left sidebar. To suggest a prisoner for a profile, send me an e-mail. For profiles of imprisoned Cuban journalists and related information, read the March 18 Project.