April 25, 2024

Press Freedom


Cuba September 8, 2006

H.E. Fidel Castro Ruz
Office of the President
Consejo de Estado
Plaza de la Revolución
Ciudad de la Habana
Republic of Cuba
Fax: (011.537) 81-22-71

Your Excellency:

The Overseas Press Club of America is gratified to hear that our colleague, Guillermo Farinas, has ended the hunger strike he began in January. But it should give pause to everyone in your government that an independent journalist should be willing to suffer so much to defend the freedom of the press.

In order to achieve unrestricted access to the Internet, which is taken for granted in most parts of the world, Farinas was willing to undergo an ordeal that brought him close to death. Despite being fed intravenously in hospital, he was suffering terribly from constant migraines, convulsions, fevers, a swollen abdomen and a heart disorder.

We wish Farinas a thorough recovery, but with little hope that he will win his demand for access to the Internet, or that the plight of many other journalists in Cuba will improve. Cuba still holds in jail 20 journalists, most of them imprisoned for more than three years. They were sentenced to long terms in jail in sham trials that deprived them of access to a serious defense. They have been held under abominable conditions.

When, finally, is the Cuban government going to stop persecuting its citizens for defending their rights as human beings? When will Cuba become a part of civilization again?

Respectfully yours,
Jeremy Main
Kevin McDermott
Freedom of the Press Committee

c c:


Raul Castro

c/o Cuban Interests Section

Embassy of Switzerland

2630 Sixteenth Street, NW

Washington , DC 20009

Fax: (202) 986-7283


Ambassador Bruno Rodríguez

Permanent Mission of the Republic of Cuba

to the United Nations

315 Lexington Avenue

New York , NY 10016

Fax: (212) 689-9073


Mr. Dagoberto Rodriguez Barrera

Cuban Interests Section

Embassy of Switzerland

2630 Sixteenth Street, NW

Washington , DC 20009

Fax: (202) 986-7283


Mr. James C. Cason

U.S. Interests Section

Embassy of Switzerland

Calzada between L and M Streets

Vedado Seccion



Fax: (011.537) 33-37-00


Hon. Louise Arbour

Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights

8-14 Avenue de la Paix

1211 Geneva 10


Fax: (011.41.22) 917-9022