As published for Ashin-Mettacara.com
Havana, March 23rd 2009. Photographer Claudio Fuentes Madan and Ciro Diaz, frontman of La Babosa Azul and guitarist of Porno Para Ricardo, have been detained by State Security after offering their show of solidarity in Placetas for political activist Jorge Luis Garcia Perez (Antunez).
Antunez is still in critical condition following a month long hunger strike to peacefully protest the treatment of prisoners of conscience in Cuba and the abuses of the Castro regime. Antunez, who had written an open letter to president Obama last week, was previously jailed for over 17 years by the Regime.
As far as we can tell, no charges have been laid against Claudia Fuentes or Ciro Diaz and the reasons behind the arrests remain unknown. In fact they are not likely to be known until they are freed or the state decides to lay charges publically. In Cuba an arrest warrant is an abstract concept and is not needed in order to detain someone and people can be held at the whim of the government and the infamous Cuban Gestapo, the G2.
In the past year we have seen harassment of the dissident elements in Cuba, who’s 50 year old Revolution claims to give a voice to the people, grow to levels that have not been seen for quite some time. Bloggers such as Yoani Sanchez and Claudia Cadelo have been called in, along with reporter and blogger Reinaldo Escorbar, for “questioning”; prize winning author OLPL was threatened with bodily harm by agents of the state prior to the launch of his new book; more recently Claudio Fuentes Madan along with members of Porno Para Ricardo were detained twice in the same day but were released with only fines to pay.
The excessive repression of the Castro regime is well known to the international community and is a constant source of debate, but when a photographer and a musician get arrested for showing their support to a man who is quite possibly dying of hunger, things have gone to far.