Cuban political prisoner Ivan Fernandez Depestre reportedly is suffering from bouts of dizziness, high blood pressure and stomach and joint pains brought on by a hunger strike he started July 30 after his arrest at a protest rally.
Fellow activists fear Fernandez may be near death, and that the Castro regime is determined to make sure the outside world doesn't learn of his condition.
Fernandez had been hospitalized, but late Monday he was discharged from a hospital and returned to prison.
“They returned him to the prison because they want to hide him in the prison, in case he dies,” dissident Loreto Hernández told the Miami Herald/El Nuevo Herald. "We fear for his life.”
Pedazos de la Isla has more on Fernandez's plight:
Several Cuban opposition activists are calling on the international community as well as their fellow compatriots to denounce the situation of political prisoner Ivan Fernandez Depestre, who has been on hunger strike for more than 27 days and whose health has drastically worsened, placing him in a state very "near death." according to a press release by the Cuban Democratic Directorate.
Fernandez Depestre was abruptly and violently jailed on July 30th after he participated in a peaceful demonstration in honor of Frank Pais, a Cuban martyr who stood up against totalitarianism on the island many years ago. Two days later, on August 2nd, Fernandez was sentenced to 3 years of prison under the Law of Social Pre-Dangerousness which orders time behind bars for citizens who look "dangerous"of committing "crimes" in the future. The activist has been on hunger strike since.
Jorge Luis Garcia Perez "Antunez", leader of the Orlando Zapata Tamayo National Civic Resistance Front, a coalition which Ivan is part of, has been frequently denouncing the situation and taking to his Twitter account to let the world know what is going on. In an audio published on his YouTube channel, Antunez expressed that Ivan is "agonizing in a protest that has lasted longer than 20 days" and that his health is "very critical."
Antunez, who is currently in the city of Miami as part of an international tour to denounce the Cuban reality, has been in contact with dissidents on the island who have carried out several protests demanding the release of Fernandez and called on the international community and all human rights organizations to end their silence in regards to this case.
Read the whole thing here.
Meanwhile, Antunez reports via Twitter that about 60 Cuban activists have been arrested for demonstrating support for Fernandez.
Here's a look at what Antunuez and others are saying about Fernandez via social media: