Jose Daniel Ferrer, a prominent Cuban human rights defender who was arrested arbitrarily in Holguin on 30 July and held incommunicado, was released on Wednesday, August 1, 2012.
Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) has told the ASSIST News Service (www.assistnews.net) that it has received reports that Jose Daniel Ferrer, a prominent Cuban human rights defender who was arrested arbitrarily in Holguin on 30 July and held incommunicado, was released on Wednesday, August 1, 2012.
Jose Daniel Ferrer
Ferrer told online blog Pedazos de la Isla that although he was interrogated by the police about his plans to travel to Havana, he was never told why he was arrested, though he suspects it is because of his human rights activism. He described how his home has been under surveillance by the authorities, with the intention of preventing him from leaving his home town.
“The police, which should be protecting the people, take orders from the Communist Party and dedicate themselves to hunt, watch, harass, impede, and detain peaceful dissidents who defend human rights, as well as Ladies in White. That is the sad reality which we try to and will change,” he said.
CSW says that Ferrer, 41, is the leader of the Patriotic Union of Cuba and a devout Catholic. In recent months, he has been actively documenting and denouncing cases of men and women who have been forcibly prevented by state security officials from participating in religious activities. He is a member of the group of 75 political prisoners arrested during the 2003 Black Spring Crackdown and was one of a small group who agreed to be released from prison on condition that he is allowed to stay in Cuba.
CSW’s Advocacy Director Andrew Johnston said, “CSW welcomes the release of Jose Daniel Ferrer, who has worked tirelessly to expose religious freedom violations in Cuba. We call on the Cuban government to end the arbitrary arrest and detention of activists like Ferrer, and respect the fundamental rights of its citizens.”
Note: Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) is a Christian organisation working for religious freedom through advocacy and human rights, in the pursuit of justice.
For further information or to arrange interviews please contact Kiri Kankhwende, Press Officer at Christian Solidarity Worldwide on +44 (0)20 8329 0045 / +44 (0) 78 2332 9663, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.csw.org.uk.