Opponents Accuse Castro Of Letting Guillermo Farinas Die On Hunger Strike / 14ymedio

Guillermo Farinas on hunger and thirst strike. (Courtesy)
Guillermo Farinas on hunger and thirst strike. (Courtesy)

14ymedio biggerEFE (via 14ymedio) – The Cuban National Congress (ENC), which consists of 65 opposition organizations inside and outside the island, said today of the dissident Guillermo Fariñas, 54, who is on a hunger strike, that if the Cuban government “lets him die” it will have committed “premeditated murder.”

In a press conference in Miami to present the results of the ENC’s second meeting held in Puerto Rico last month, several members of the organization’s recently created Coordinating Board stressed that all their attention is focused on Fariñas, leader of the United Anti-Totalitarian Forum (FANTU), and they asked the international community to exert pressure to save his life.

Fariñas, a resident of Santa Clara in central Cuba, has been on a hunger and thirst strike for 49 days to demand that Raul Castro’s government end its repression of peaceful dissent and open a dialog with the opposition, according to reports from other opposition members.

“We need him alive for the future of Cuba,” Guillermo Toledo, ENC’s general coordinator for liaison representing Cuban exiles, said today.

Toledo, who lives in Puerto Rico, as well as Ramon Saul Sanchez and Julio Shiling, also members of the ENC Coordinating Board, stressed that Fariñas’ state is “serious” and could become “critical” at any time.

The Cuban government periodically gives Fariñas emergency rehydration treatment and returns him to his home a few hours later, opponents said.

“Fariñas needs intensive care in a hospital,” Toleda said, adding that the fact of having to move him every time he loses consciousness amounts to “premeditated murder.”

Given the situation, Alice Fariñas, daughter of the dissident, intends to launch an international “SOS” for her father on Friday.