Cuban political prisoner Ivan Hernandez released: Will go home, but will not stay quiet

Ivan Hernandez Carrillo

The Cuban dictatorship has released prisoner of conscience Ivan Hernandez Carrillo from prison, and he will remain in Cuba. Like all the other political prisoner releases that have taken place over the past few months, the Castro regime classified Hernandez’ release as a parole, which provides them with the option of imprisoning him again for anything they deem to be a violation of that parole. Nevertheless, Hernandez has vowed to continue his work as an independent journalist in spite of the warnings he was given by State Security to “go home and stay quiet.”

HAVANA — Cuba’s government on Saturday freed independent journalist Ivan Hernandez, the third release in eight days of a political prisoner refusing to leave the communist-ruled nation and go into exile.

Hernandez, 39, was arrested in 2003. He was among some 52 opponents of the regime President Raul Castro had promised to release last July in a deal brokered by the Catholic Church.

“I am free. I will keep writing, as I did from prison and as I will now from the street. I will write of the events that affect ordinary Cubans,” Hernandez defiantly told AFP by telephone from his home in Matanzas, some 100 kilometers (62 miles) east of the capital.

“A major from the Interior Ministry told me that since I was being released from jail, that I should stay quiet at my home. But I told him that I was going to keep writing and working as an independent journalist just like before they convicted me” to 25 years in prison when he was working for the Patria (Fatherland) dissident news agency, the dissident added.