Act of Repudiation
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    Cuba: Possible prisoner of conscience Amnesty International

    AI Index: AMR 25/003/2006 5 December 2006
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    Cuba: Possible prisoner of conscience/ harassment/ intimidation: Ahmed
    Rodríguez Albacia (m)

    PUBLIC AI Index: AMR 25/003/2006
    05 December 2006

    UA 325/06 Possible prisoner of conscience/ harassment/ intimidation

    CUBA Ahmed Rodríguez Albacia (m), aged 21, journalist, and his family

    On 4 December, Ahmed Rodríguez Albacia, a journalist for the Cuban-based
    independent press agency Jóvenes sin Censura (Youth without Censorship), was
    reportedly arrested at his house in Havana by State Security personnel and
    National Police officers. He is being held at the police station located
    at 100
    Street and Aldabó Street in Havana. Amnesty International is concerned that
    Ahmed Rodríguez Albacia may be a prisoner of conscience, arrested solely for
    exercising his right to freedom of expression, association and assembly
    in the
    course of his journalistic work.

    According to reports, days before Ahmed Rodríguez Albacia’s arrest, he, his
    family and several dissidents who were gathered at his house were
    subjected to
    so-called “acts of repudiation” (“acto de repudio”), demonstrations of
    government supporters outside the homes of dissidents and activists,
    which are
    often orchestrated by the authorities. Amnesty International believes that
    these “acts of repudiation” could amount to psychological torture. The
    “acts of
    repudiation” started on 29 November, when stones were thrown at Ahmed
    Albacia’s house, the roof of his house was set on fire, and some of Ahmed’s
    guests were detained for a few hours by Cuban authorities when they left his
    house. Stones were repeatedly thrown at Ahmed Rodríguez Albacia’s house
    throughout the next two days, and one of his guests who had been
    detained on 29
    November was detained again for few hours on 30 November.

    On 15 September, Ahmed Rodríguez Albacia was reportedly arrested at a police
    station in Havana after requesting information about another dissident
    who had
    been arrested earlier .He was released on 17 September but police allegedly
    threatened that if he carried on with his journalistic activities he
    would be
    detained again.

    Freedom of expression and association is heavily restricted in Cuba. All
    media outlets are under government control and independent media are banned.
    Independent journalists who attempt to beat this censorship by publishing
    articles outside Cuba face intimidation, harassment and imprisonment. Human
    rights defenders also face intimidation and politically motivated and
    arrests. The laws used to arrest and imprison journalists, relating to
    defamation, national security and disturbing public order, severely
    limit the
    exercise of civil and political liberties.

    AI Index: AMR 25/003/2006 5 December 2006

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