Cuban Democratic Directorate has the latest update on political prisoner Orlando Zapata Tamayo, who has been on hunger strike since Dec. 3.
Simply put, he is missing:
Havana. February 19, 2010. Cuban Democratic Directorate. On Tuesday, February 16, Cuban prisoner of conscience Orlando Zapata Tamayo was loaded onto an ambulance to Havana at Amalia Simoni Provincial Hospital in Camagüey. Cuban regime officials have refused to inform Zapata Tamayo’s mother, Reina Luisa Tamayo Danger, of his whereabouts or his current medical condition. Zapata Tamayo has been on hunger strike since December 3, 2009, the date of his transfer to Camagüey’s notorious Kilo 8 prison, classed as a “maximum severity” prison in Cuba. He was transferred to Amalia Simoni hospital in mid-January, 2010.
Reina Luisa Tamayo Danger is demanding she be allowed to see her soon. She is currently located at State Security Section 21 in the municipality of Marianao, across from the Carlos J. Finlay Military Hospital.
Reina has called on the diplomatic and international press corps in Havana to bring attention to her son’s plight. She holds the Havana regime and State Security responsible for what may happen to her son, “since they are the ones responsible for his physical integrity, and it is their fault Zapata began a hunger strike.”
Zapata demands that he be recognized as a prisoner of conscience, and not be forced to wear the uniform of a common prisoner. Amnesty International recognized him as a prisoner of conscience in 2003. Additionally, Zapata demands that his physical integrity be respected. Zapata has been the victim of numerous beatings and acts of torture. Zapata has further stated that he demands the same respect for his rights as the Batista regime offered Fidel Castro during his imprisonment after the 1953 attack on the Moncada barracks.
En espanol, aqui.
UPDATED, Feb. 19, 2010 - Thank you, Jay Nordlinger.
UPDATED, Feb. 20, 2010 - Ramon Saul Sanchez interviewed Reina Tamayo on Friday, and he reports she said that she knows Zapata is being held in the medical section at the Combindado del Este prison in Havana. She said she was told she could not see him because he is suffering from a contagious infection. However, she said she would see him this morning.