House Arrest for Cuban Writer Fernendez Era and ‘CDR Guard Duty’ for His Wife

Jorge Fernández Era along with his wife Laideliz Herrera Laza. (Facebook)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Havana, April 29, 2023–A few days after writer and journalist Jorge Fernández Era denounced reprisals against his incarcerated son, the Cuban regime imposed 39 days of house arrest on Friday. In a Facebook post on his profile, the intellectual confirmed the measures for him and his wife, which were communicated at the police station in Aguilera, Havana.

Fernández Era explained that his “detention” lasted three hours and that security agents informed him of the charges for the crimes of disobedience, a case which will be filed in the Municipal Tribunal of Arroyo Naranjo. The writer stated that an order prohibiting him from leaving the country remains in effect, to which now they have added house arrest which he is “forced to serve beginning this minute through June 6th.”

He joked about the supposed precautionary measure imposed on his wife, who must go “on CDR guard duty by herself; find chicken, hot dogs, ground beef, detergent, oil and cigarettes at Coco and General Lee; take out the trash and support the work of the delegates in our district.”

In a new post, the writer bemoaned that he could not keep his promise to sit at the monument to José Martí in Havana’s Central Park at noon this Saturday, in peaceful protest against the harassment his son is suffering. House arrest “prevents me from doing so in person, but not in spirit and in thought,” he maintained.

Furthermore, he denounced that the smear campaign has involved his son’s mother and grandmother, and he called upon Miguel Díaz-Canel’s “common sense, intelligence, and dignity” to cease the pressure against his family and he recriminated against organizations which “are supposed to represent the people,” but are “complicit in infamy through their silence.”

This week, the writer denounced on social media reprisals against his son 22-year-old Eduardo Luis Fernández who is serving a sentence for robbery with violence. According to him, the young Cuban was transferred from Toledo 2 prison to El Chico, without the penitentiary privileges he had earned for good behavior, as a way to pressure him, although authorities told him it was to “protect him from his father’s influence.”

Recently, the writer broke ties with the digital magazine La Joven Cuba,  after its director, Harold Cárdenas Lema, rejected his Sunday column in which he satirized the American pro-Castroist organization Puentes de Amor and State Security. Leaders of the media outlet, with which he collaborated since February 2021, believed the article  was “discrediting the projects and institutions which we prefer to analyze politically, rather than approach them as satire.”

On several occasions, Fernández Era has had problems with State Security, including arrests, interrogations and harassment. The journalists holds State authorities responsible for anything that may happen to his son and believes the government’s behavior is “characteristic of a fascism entrenched in the soul of a nation.”

Furthermore, he requested support from the Government of Spain and its Embassy in Cuba to intercede on his behalf and provide him a visa that would allow him to reach Madrid to present one of the books he edited and a trip which, according to him, he began making arrangements for before the police harassment against him began.

Translated by: Silvia Suárez


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