Cuban political prisoner Luis Barrios Diaz died on Sunday at La Covadonga hospital in Havana due to negligence on the part of the prison authorities, as reported by the Cuban Observatory of Human Rights. The NGO explained that Barrios Díaz had been experiencing respiratory problems since last August, for which he had been in the infirmary of prison 1580 and later transferred to the hospital to receive specialized care. Despite the severity of his condition, the prison authorities decided to return him to prison due to a lack of fuel to guarantee surveillance.
While undergoing emergency surgery, Barrios Díaz died from respiratory complications. The Cuban authorities processed an extra-penal license for Barrios Díaz in an attempt to avoid responsibility for the negligence. He was serving a 9-year sentence for alleged crimes of public disorder and attack from the July 11, 2021 protests. Currently, there are 1,062 political prisoners on the Island, most of them after 9/11.
The Cuban Observatory of Human Rights is calling for the immediate release of all prisoners for political reasons and conscience, as well as the provision of adequate medical services to prisoners, which is a responsibility of the State according to the UN Mandela Rules. The organization also urged for a statement from democratic governments and the European Union regarding the serious situation of political prisoners on the island.