Ex-preso de conciencia cubano Raúl Arencibia desmiente declaraciones de canciller cubano contra Orlando Zapata Tamayo
Former Cuban prisoner of conscience Raúl Arencibia Fajardo arrested with Orlando Zapata Tamayo in a December 2006 sit-in talks about the real man and exposes misstatements made by the Cuban Foreign Minister at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on March 3, 2010.
Background (from Amnesty International)
Orlando Zapata Tamayo was a member of the Movimiento Alternativa Republicana,Consejo Nacional de Resistencia Cívica, National Civic Resistance Committee. Alternative Republican Movement, and a member of the
He had been arrested several times in the past. For example he was temporarily detained on 3 July 2002 and 28 October 2002. In November 2002 after taking part in a workshop on human rights in the central Havana park, José Martí, he and eight other government opponents were reportedly arrested and later released.
On 6 December 2002 Oscar Elias Biscet González, president of the unofficial Fundación Lawton de Derechos Humanos, Lawton Human Rights Foundation, was detained with 16 other dissidents after they attempted to meet at a home in Havana to discuss human rights. This meeting was reportedly part of an effort by Dr. Biscet to form a grassroots project for the promotion of human rights called "Friends of Human Rights." When police prevented them from entering the home, Oscar Biscet and the others reportedly sat down in the street in protest and uttered slogans such as "long live human rights" and "freedom for political prisoners." They were then arrested and taken to the Tenth Unit of the National Revolutionary Police, Décima Unidad de La Policía Nacional Revolucionaria (PNR), in Havana. All but four of the 16 had been released. In addition to Oscar Biscet, those still in detention are Raúl Arencibia Fajardo, said to be linked to Oscar Biscets Lawton Human Rights Foundation; Virgilio Marante Güelmes, believed to belong to the 24 February Human Rights Movement; and Orlando Zapata Tamayo. Orlando Zapata Tamayo was released on 8 March 2003.
He was arrested for the last time on the morning of 20 March 2003 whilst taking part in a hunger strike at the Fundación Jesús Yánez Pelletier, Jesús Yánez Pelletier Foundation, in Havana, to demand the release of Oscar Biscet [imprisoned with him on December 6, 2002] and other political prisoners. He was reportedly taken to the Villa Marista State Security Headquarters. He was charged and held for over a year before being found guilty and sentenced to three years imprisonment for desacato, desordenes publicos, public disorder, and desobediencia.
He had been moved around several prisons, including Quivicán Prison, Guanajay Prison, and most recently, Combinado del Este Prison in Havana. According to reports, on 20 October 2003 he was dragged along the floor of Combinado del Este Prison by prison officials after requesting medical attention, leaving his back full of lacerations.
Orlando was sentenced to three years' imprisonment in 2003 on charges of showing contempt to the figure of Fidel Castro, public disorder and resistance. In November 2005 he was sentenced to an additional 15 years for contempt and resistance in prison. In May 2006, he was again tried on the same charges and sentenced to an additional seven-year term. He was serving a prison sentence of 25 years and six months at the time of his death on hungerstrike on February 23, 2010