Thursday, May 27, 2010

Political prisoner's mom on how Cuban officials misled & threatened her

As people of good faith around the world tune into what is happening in Cuba with the death of prisoner of conscience Orlando Zapata Tamayo on February 23, 2010; the brutal broadcast beatings of the Ladies in White by government organized mobs on International Human Rights day and again in March 2010; and the attack on 19-year old artist Alexandra Joner in Oslo, Norway by Carmen Julia Guerra, the Cuban Consul, they should take into account Noris's testimony below when weighing the validity of the claims made by Cuban officials and their apologists.

Egberto Escobedo Morales

Noris Morales is the mother of Cuban political prisoner Egberto Escobedo Morales, who has been on hunger strike since April 16 protesting conditions in his prison.

In the video below, Sra. Morales describes how Cuban officials tricked her into believing she might be able to win the release of her son. (An English transcript is below.)P.S. Thanks to Marc Masferrer for posting this video on his blog Uncommon Sense.

My name is Noris Morales I am the mother of Egberto Escobedo Morales. My son is serving a 29 year prison sentence in the prisons of Cuba. He will have spent 16 years in prison as of June 11, 2010. 16 years suffering the worse things in life: beatings, hunger strikes, and struggling with hunger strikes.

I left Cuba.

In the year that I left Cuba they mislead me into leaving. They promised me if I was able to obtain a visa from any country that they would turn him over to me.

I went to Costa Rica. My family helped me. When I got there I began to struggle and had the visa denied on three occasions because he was in prison. They said they could not give it to me.

One day it occurred to me to go to the Government House of Costa Rica and when my nerves got bad. The first Lady became aware of my presence there. It was her office where she worked. Lady Lorena Clare was able to get me the visa and she helped me.

I believed in the communists. I believed that they had told me the truth. I took the visa and went to Cuba. I arrived in Havana with 150 pesos. When I got to Camaguey I was without a penny. I went there with the hope that my son would be turned over to me.

I get to Camaguey where the delegation meets, at the Ministry thats when they told me: "Oh..but you believed that? You can't be right in the head." They had told me that (about the visa) to leave the country and not be next to my son and when they told me this I said that cannot be. Now I will stay. If you do not give me my son I will stay on a hunger strike. Whatever - you need to turn him over to me.

When I told my son that I would remain imprisoned. I hadn't done anything. I had committed no crime but they told me that if I stayed it would be in prison. I would remain imprisoned but they had to give me my son.

But my son told me on his knees - He asked me on his knees: "Mom please get out - leave Cuba. You are my hope that I will stay alive that my voice will be heard outside. The hope that I get out of here is you mother.

That was a few years ago that I left. What I have accomplished until now? I have not been able to get him out of the prison not even for an hour. They tricked me. The only thing I have been able to do is to denounce this. That the world know about the situation of my son. I have him in a very grave state at this moment. He is vomiting blood. I don't know if he is going to be saved. My son is going to die just like Zapata. I don't want that to happen to my son. Help me please. Please help me. My son is going to die. I don't want him to die.

Update June 16, 2010: Frances Robles reported in The Miami Herald June 15, 2010 that "Egberto Angel Escobedo completed his 17th year in a Cuban prison last Friday, and his 56th day of a hunger strike." The article also informs "Escobedo is having trouble breathing, is suffering from a kidney stone passed earlier this month. He pleaded to be taken to a hospital but was returned to his cell block."

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