The exile organization Directorio Democrático Cubano published on Tuesday a video in support of the human rights activists on hunger strike for 11 days in Santiago de Cuba, currently “besieged” by the regime at the headquarters of the opposition Unión Patriótica de Cuba (Unpacu).
The video “Huelga de Hambre #PatriayVida” (Hunger Strike #HomelandandLife), a minute and a half long and with subtitles in English, shows photos of the Unpacu strikers, whose headquarters in Santiago de Cuba was recently “assaulted” by two hundred Castroist agents.
“The video is in English to reach an audience less informed of the Cuban reality,” Orlando Gutierrez, of the Cuban Democratic Directorate, based in Miami (Florida), told Efe today.
With interwoven images of independent artists and opponents who are part of the San Isidro Movement (MSI), in the Cuban capital, the video draws the trajectory of José Daniel Ferrer, leader of Unpacu and former prisoner of conscience, currently on hunger strike.
Ferrer was one of the communicators and activists arrested in 2003 during the so-called “Black Spring,” for which he served eight years in prison, in addition to six months in jail in 2020.
“Today I spoke with José Daniel, he’s not feeling well. He told me that there are 56 strikers left”, of the 59 who began the fast not only in Cuba, but in other places around the world as support, Gutiérrez indicated.
The graphic material released today also shows walls of the Unpacu headquarters vandalized and with excrement stains, it is presumed that this was done by communist officials.
According to the Cuban Democratic Directorate, Unpacu provides food and medicine to a neighborhood in Santiago de Cuba in great need.
“The regime has blocked all access” to this organization, located on Altamira Street, states one of the texts in the video.
This Tuesday, Ferrer himself denounced on Twitter that “the siege (on Unpacu) is more ironclad than ever.”
“To pass through this street you have to show an ID card and prove that you live in this street. They just installed cameras everywhere. Internet cuts. 16 days of siege,” he wrote.
Last Friday, OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro accused the Cuban regime of applying “State terrorism to those who think differently” and made it responsible for “the health and well-being” of Cuban human rights activists on hunger strike.
The head of the Organization of American States (OAS) participated in a virtual press conference organized by Cuba Decide, together with Ferrer and other opponents, such as artist Luis Manuel Otero Alcántara.
Ferrer, who intervened in the conference via Zoom, assured that they had “no other option” but to go on hunger strike.