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Guillermo Fariñas
Occupation Journalist

Guillermo Fariñas Hernández ("El Coco"),49, is a doctor of psychology[1] independent journalist[2] and political dissident in Cuba.


Early life


Fariñas won medals in 1981 while a Cuban soldier in Angola, who fought under Colonel Antonio Enrique Luzon, and was wounded in battle. In 1982 Fariñas went to the U.S.S.R. to Tambov, near Moscow for military education. In 1993 he was elected in Cuba, as the General Secretary of Healthcare Union Workers. In 1995 he was sent to jail after whistle blowing on corruption activities of the hospital board director.

His father was also part of the cuban military forces, and fought in the Congo under Che Guevara in the 1960's.

2006 hunger strike

Guillermo Fariñas has stated that he is ready to die in the struggle against censorship in Cuba.[2] He held a seven-month hunger strike to protest against the Internet censorship in Cuba. He ended it in Autumn 2006, with severe health problems although still conscious.[2] His acts have received worldwide attention and Reporters Without Borders awarded its cyber-freedom prize to Guillermo Fariñas in 2006.[3], and received International Human Rights Award at Weimar[4]

2010 hunger strike

In February 26, 2010, he declared yet another hunger strike to protest the death of fellow dissident Orlando Zapata Tamayo. He has indicated that will remain on strike until twenty-six other prisioners of conscience who are seriously ill are set free.


Cuban government response

"Cuba will not accept pressure or blackmail, important Western media groups are again calling attention to a prefabricated lie. It is not medicine that should resolve a problem that was created intentionally to discredit our political system -- but rather the patient himself, unpatriotic people, foreign diplomats and the media that manipulates him. The consequences will be their responsibility, and theirs alone."
Granma, March 8, 2010 [5]

The Cuban state newspaper Granma stated that Farinas' legal troubles began "because of a physical altercation with a female co-worker - not politics" and described him as "a paid agent of the United States" and employee of the U.S. Interests Section.[5]

See also


External Links


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