‘I have suffered a lot of torture’: Forcibly exiled Cuban dissident seeks immediate medical care upon arrival in Miami

Lázaro Yuri Valle Roca and his wife Eralidis Frómeta at Miami airport

From our Bureau of Socialist Tolerance, Compassion, and Social Justice

An emaciated Lázaro Yuri Valle Roca didn’t have much to say upon arriving in Miami — due to his enfeebled condition — but his physical appearance and what he said shed abundant light on the cruelty of Castro, Inc.’s prisons. And the very same regime that tried to kill him in prison and then expelled him from his native land is constantly praised by leftists everywhere and continually patronized by millions of feckless, morally bankrupt Canadian and European tourists.

Loosely translated from Marti Noticias

Independent Cuban journalist Lázaro Yuri Valle Roca arrived in Miami this Wednesday, following an expedited release that took him within hours from the most severe prison on the island, the Combinado del Este in Havana, to the Penitentiary Ward of the Military Hospital, and from there to the José Martí International Airport.

Upon his arrival in the United States, after receiving humanitarian parole, he gave brief statements to the press waiting for him at the airport terminal, in which he confessed to being overwhelmed by everything that had happened.

“Honestly, now I want to apologize because I am in a situation where, because of what I have been through, I have suffered a lot of torture. They have a lot of hatred against me, for what I represent, for everything they did to my grandfather, to my family, and not just to my family, but to all the people of Cuba,” said the grandson of the founder of the Communist Party of Cuba, Blas Roca Calderío, amid a flood of emotions.

The Cuban journalist had been detained since June 15, 2021, after filming several activists who threw leaflets with Marti’s phrases on Zanja Street in the Centro Habana municipality. He was sentenced on July 28, 2022, to five years in prison for the alleged crimes of resistance and continuous enemy propaganda.

“There have been so many things that have happened to me that I even forget things. It’s a memory eraser. Honestly, I need to take at least two or three days to see a doctor,” he apologized.

His wife, Eralidis Frómeta, traveled with him and upon their arrival in the U.S., she reported that Valle Roca had been without medical treatment for his multiple illnesses.

Securing specialized medical attention for him is a priority for the couple once settled in the U.S., she commented.

Frómeta mentioned that her husband has, among many ailments, a visual tumor, a gallstone, aortic sclerosis, kidney failure, pulmonary reinforcement, and a deviated septum “as a result of beatings by the Castro regime’s criminals.

“I’m a bag of bones,” joked the former political prisoner, referring to his drastic weight loss.

During his time behind bars, Valle Roca became the most visible face of the violations of freedom of expression and press on the island, and prestigious international organizations denounced his imprisonment and demanded his immediate release.

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said his sentence was “a clear signal that the Cuban government is resorting to its old playbook, using the extreme measure of imprisoning journalists to maintain its regime of censorship.”

Continue reading HERE in Spanish

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