Open letter by Cuban artists demands the Castro regime release imprisoned artist Luis Manuel Otero Alcantara

Cuban artists have been joined by artists and intellectuals from other nations in an open letter to the socialist Castro dictatorship demanding the release of imprisoned independent artist, Luis Manuel Otero Alcantara.

My translation of the letter is below and you can add your name by signing the petition at Avaaz:

Declaration by artists, editors, activists, journalists, professionals in art and literature, and intellectuals from Cuba and other nations:

The artist Luis Manuel Otero Alcantara is awaiting trial at the Valle Grande prison in Havana. Over the last three years, Otero Alcantara has been arbitrarily arrested more than twenty times. His only crime has been his art.

Since the passing of Decree 349 in April of 2018, the Cuban government has been exercising the censorship of artists it considers “inconvenient” with complete impunity. The threats, the interrogations, and the imprisonment has perversely turned this into a daily occurrence. Luis Manuel has suffered an intense campaign of defamation and harassment at the hands of the Cuban police with the goal of suffocating his creative spirit and exhaust him as an artist and a person until they eliminate his art. But Luis Manuel has not surrendered; each day he works harder than the day before.

We want it known that the recent accusation of property destruction was manufactured by the State in order to charge him as a common criminal. This shows the previous accusations of contempt and insulting patriotic symbols are weak. This attack is not only against Otero Alcantara, but also against the entire community of artists and intellectuals and against Cuban civil society in total. It is an aggression designed to foment fear in order to achieve the complicity and silence of all Cubans.

That is why today we break that silence. We cannot be accomplices to the kidnapping of an entire nation, of a republic that diminishes the fundamental rights of its citizens. Because every word said or not said by us will have the weight to forge or bring down the bars that are now being built around Luis Manuel. We refuse to cooperate with the repression of the police and the courts. We refuse to testify against Otero Alcantara as a person, as a citizen of civic conscience, and as an artist.

The persecution of Otero Alcantara affects us all as artists, as Cubans, and as human beings who love liberty! With all of us and for the good of all, today we demand the immediate liberation of Luis Manuel Otero Alcantara.

Free Luisma!

The signatories are below the fold.

Tania Bruguera
Coco Fusco  
Rafael Rojas
Tamara Díaz Bringas
Gerardo Fernández Fe
Enrique del Risco
Lazaro Saavedra
Carlos Manuel Alvarez
Magela Garcés
Heidi Hassan
Sandra Ramos
Suset Sànchez
Enrique Guzmán
Karel Valía Garzón
Guiomar Rovira
Lourdes Berruecos
Maai Ortiz
Alen Lauzan
Itandehui Mèndez
Ariel Maceo Tellez
Leandro Feal Bonachea
Carolina Barrero Ferrer
Hamlet Lavastida Cordovi
Solveig Font Martinez
Reynier Leyva Novo
Carlos Quintela
Lester Alvarez Meno
Julio Llopiz Casal
Carlos Lechuga
Magaly Espinosa
Amaury García
Donovan Hernández Castellanos
Caridad Cumaná
Marialina García
Jennifer Acuña Velazco
Carlos Alejandro Barreras Campos
Ariadna Ruiz Almanza
Osmani Suárez
Anaeli Ibarra Caceres
Danae Dieguez
Javier Jimenez Alemán
Eric Silva
Yissel Arce Padrón
José Raúl Gallego
María de Lourdes
Mariño Salvador Salazar
Lisabell Sánchez Somonte
Erick González
León Anet Hernández Agrelo
Grethel Domenech
Carlos Aníbal Alonso Castilla, director de Rialta
Ibrahim Hernández Oramas, editor principal de Rialta
Celia Irina González Álvarez
Juan Enrique Gonzalez
Roberto Rodríguez Reyes, editor de Rialta
Ileana Diéguez
Claudia Padrón Cueto
Henry Eric Hernández
Ernesto Fundora
Diana Cuèllar
Adrián Melis
Raquel Cruz Crespo
Roxana Martínez Bermejo
Aylín Sànchez
Luis Adriàn Vargas Santiago
Liset Turiño
Andrea Villers
Yimit Ramírez
Camila Ramírez Lobón
Carlos Gámez Ramírez
Yuliano Basulto Reyes
Marta María Ramírez García
Raychel Carrión
Jaime Fernando Mosqueira
Luis Ortiz
Mario Rufer
Margarita Zires
Silvia Gutiérrez
Mabel Cuesta
Diana Fidelia Flores Palacios
Joanna Vidal
Janet Batet
Jesus Adonis Martínez Peña
Elaine Acosta González
Maykel González Vivero
Ricardo Acosta
Rolando Perez
Rubén Mendoza
Isbel Díaz Torres
Jimmy Roque Martínez
Jorge Ferdecaz
Karla María Pérez González.
Mónica Baró
Kevin Ávila
Margarita Reyna
Yunersy Legorburo
Luz Escobar
Ángel Delgado
Omara Ruiz Urquiola
Ery Càmara
Sandor Pérez
Pita Anamely Ramos González
Reyna Sànchez
Emilio Nocedal
Henry Ballate
Armando Chaguaceda 
Jamila Medina
Nonardo Perea
Dashel Hernández
Guirado Taylor Torres Escalona
Norges Rodriguez
Patricia Quintana Lantigua
Diana María Rodríguez Vértiz
Lisbet Echevarría
Yalicel Gabeira
Paulina Álvarez
Ana Olema
Diddier Santos
Edisabel Marrero
Gretel Acosta
Rafael Almanza
Katherine Bisquet Rodríguez
Renier Quer Figueredo
Omar Mena González
Yanelys Nuñez Leyva
Amaury Pacheco del Monte
Iris Ruiz Hernández
Claudia Genlui Hidalgo
Michel Matos
Luis Alberto Mariño
Carla María Bellido
Lynn Cruz
Luis Trápaga 
José Luis Aparicio Ferrera
José Manuel Mesías
Odette Casamayor Cisneros
Gustavo Rodríguez
Waldo Pérez Cuenca
Circles Robinson
Miguel Coyula
Juan Sí González
Carlos Javier Martínez
Carmen Ana Aranda Cabrera
Abel González Fernández
María Elena Blanco
Estela María Chaviano
Grethell Rasúa
Fausto Canel
Jorge Núñez
Luis Felipe Rojas
Martín Guevara Duarte (escritor) (Argentina)
Sheyla Pool
Humberto Calzada (pintor)
Jorge Núñez (escritor)
Susy Caula Fernández (productora, El Salvador)
Omar Lopez (escritor)
Javier Caso (artista visual)
Armando Mariño,
Lisset Martinez Herryman,
Cesar Perez,
Gustavo Rodriguez (Garrincha)
Kenia Arguiñao
Clara Morera
Ernesto Menendez Conde
Vicky Romay
Gonzalo Hernandez Arocha
Jairo Alfonso
Joaquin Badajoz
Maria Antonia Cabrera Aruz
Walfrido Dorta
Meyken Barreto
Esther Maria Hernandez
Sandra Contreras Tablada
Eduardo Andión
Harold García
Rolando Vàzquez
Enrico Mario Santi
Jorge Brioso
Yuneikis Villalonga, curadora
Alexander Pozo
Juan-Miguel Pozo
Manuel Zayas
Armando Lucas Correa
Miguel Sirgado (editor)
Sandra Ceballos