Updated, Nov. 29, 2012 -- Antonio Rodiles was released from jail on Nov. 26, 2012.
A version of this post appeared earlier.
Cuban dissident Antonio Rodiles remains the only dissident still in jail after a crackdown last week.
A coordinator of a civil society initiative calling on the government to ratify international human rights treaties, Antonio Rodiles, has been charged with “resisting authority” (resistencia). He has been placed in pre-trial detention (prisión provisional), but no date has been set for his trial.
Shortly after the arrest of the independent lawyer and journalist Yaremis Flores on 7 November, Antonio Rodiles, his wife and several other government critics went to the Department of State Security headquarters, know as Section 21 (Sección 21) in the neighbourhood of Marianao in Havana, to enquire after her whereabouts. Before they could reach the building they were approached by 20 people, all plain-clothed, as two officials from the Ministry of the Interior looked on. Antonio Rodiles was reportedly knocked to the ground and pinned down by four men. Several of the other activists were also manhandled and were forced into a police vehicle and sent to various police stations around Havana. All were released by 11 November, except Antonio Rodiles.
The Public Prosecutor’s Office (fiscalía) informed Antonio Rodiles’ wife on 14 November that he was being charged with “resisting authority” but a formal charge document has yet to be issued.
Antonio Rodiles is one of the coordinators of Citizen Demand for Another Cuba (Demanda Ciudadana Por Otra Cuba), an initiative calling for Cuba to ratify the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, as well as the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, which the country signed in 2008. Amnesty International believes the charges against him may be being used to punish and prevent his peaceful activities as a government critic and is gathering further information on his case and treatment.
Amnesty has details on what you can to help.
On Sunday, Rodiles' wife released this photograph, purportedly of Rodiles in prison with a bruise to his eye delivered by his captors.
And for more about Rodiles, read what his sister wrote about him. In part, she says:
My brother is an honest, intelligent man, respectful of the rights and opinions of others. He likes to converse and to look for logical solutions through objective analysis of the things that are happening.
He has always had a vision of a better Cuba for all Cubans and the right of Cubans to be heard and the responsibility to take the reins with regards to which direction our country should follow.
He is a man of integrity, he knows how to present his ideas clearly at all levels to be understood both by the Doctor of Science and by the high school student. He knows how to pay attention without discriminating against anyone’s opinion, because everyone has different experiences in life and all are valid and enrich the perspective from which we see the problem.