It has been over two weeks since Cuban opposition leader Luis Manuel Otero Alcantara was forcibly hospitalized by the communist Castro dictatorship. They claim he’s healthy, but refuse to release him or let anyone see him.
Cuban dissident held in hospital for 15 days, regime claims from the first day that he is in good health
15 days have passed since opposition activist and independent artist Luis Manuel Otero Alcántara was taken from his home by State Security on Sunday, May 2, 2021 and transferred him to the Calixto García Hospital located in the Cuban capital. Some family members were able to finally see him, but the secretive situation continues to concern human rights defenders. Officials claim that he is in good health, but he is not allowed to leave the hospital or communicate by phone or with anyone beyond some family members.
There is reason to be concerned.
“In the past, the Calixto García Hospital and other Cuban hospitals have been the scene of the death of other opponents under the control of the agents of the Ministry of the Interior, as was the case of the leader of the Ladies in White Laura Pollán Toledo in October 2011. The agents of the political police isolate the person, do not allow the entry of their relatives or friends, and the treatment they apply or the one they stop applying to lead them to death is unknown. There are numerous cases of unexplained deaths in hospitals on the Island under the custody of State Security. Another case was that of the blind opponent Sergio Díaz Larrastegui in April 2012,” explained Janisset Rivero, who for years has documented these cases and is a collaborator of the Center for a Free Cuba.
In both cases, that of Pollán and that of Díaz Larrastegui, whose homes were headquarters in Havana of important human rights organizations, their deaths meant the closure of the headquarters and a severe blow to the civic movement.
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