English PEN Honorary Member Léster Luis González Pentón was the youngest of the opposition members arrested in crackdown of March 2003, and was sentenced to 20 years imprisonment. He is one of the twenty one writers, journalists and librarians arrested during the Black Spring still detained today.
According to our information, Léster Luis González Pentón is being held at the Prisión de Jóvenes, Santa Clara, where he has undertaken a number of hunger strikes in protest against poor prison conditions. He reportedly had a hernia operation in prison hospital in early 2008 and is thought to have had another operation scheduled for 26 June. In addition, Léster Luis González Pentón has been diagnosed with chronic gastritis, sinusitis and lower back pain, and suffers from anxiety caused by his imprisonment and being separated from his young daughter.
PEN firmly believes that his conviction and continued detention are in violation of international human rights standards to which Cuba is party. Furthermore, the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights has formally declared that all those sentenced in the March 2003 clampdown are being detained arbitrarily. In light of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), signed by Cuban leaders on 28 February 2008, which states, “No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest or detention”, we strongly urge the Cuban authorities to release Léster Luis González Pentón, immediately and unconditionally.
Originally posted with the url: www.englishpen.org/writersinprison/campaigns/cubacampaign/honorarymemberlsterluisgonzlezpentn/