Cuba

Another Cuban Libertarian Disappeared; His Associates Fear He's Been Secretly Arrested [UPDATE: Activist Found, Claims to Have Been Beaten]

Nelson Rodriguez Chartrand, involved in poster campaign for previously arrested Cuban libertarians, has disappeared, his associates report.

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Another libertarian activist in Cuba may have been taken into illegitimate custody by the Castro regime, his associates in the Partido Libertario Cubano – Jose Marti are reporting.

Partido Libertario Cubano – Jose Mari

Nelson Rodriguez Chartrand, who wrote an article in the PanAm Post which I reported on here last week, about a rebel poster campaign that he was involved in to remind Havana about two other libertarian activists in Cuban custody, Ubaldo Herrera Hernandez and Manuel Velazquez Visea, has himself disappeared.

[UPDATE: Chartrand has reappeared this afternoon, though according to a report from L.P. Nevada activist Zach Foster via other Cuban activists, "After over 24 hours' disappearance, Nelson Rodriguez Chartrand has emerged and is in contact with the party leaders. He was beaten and shaken, but in one piece. The Cuban LP has even more reason now to conclude State Security agents are responsible."

In an IM interview this afternoon, Foster reports via his Cuban sources that Chartrand was "leaving his adult son's house with a box of books to be donated to the new Libertarian Library by LP Spain (P-LIB). The men who attacked him were dressed like common street thugs, but: knew exactly where to find him; they knew what time to find him; they used sophisticated takedown and holding techniques indicative of a law enforcement background; not only did they steal the cash relief money for the prisoner Ubaldo's mother, but…… They stole the libertarian political economy books, and dropped him off stranded in the middle of nowhere to walk back to Havana."]

Back to the original post for the record:

Zach Foster, an American libertarian with the Nevada L.P. who is in communication with the Cuban libertarians, reports at the Libertarian Republic that Chartrand:

disappeared on the night of May 22 under very suspicious circumstances. We in the Cuban LP and LP Nevada believe Nelson was kidnapped on his way home by State Security! The party leaders have searched all the police stations and jailhouses but magically, he's nowhere in the records….

the police have been contacted, but "No crime has been committed; not coming home isn't a crime," and he hasn't been gone long enough yet to be considered a missing person.

Foster reports that State Security officers were seen tailing Chartrand before he disappeared, and that he is not in any local hospitals.

While assuming that someone who doesn't come home has been secretly arrested might seem a baroque fear to an American, as Foster notes "Invisible arrests in the middle of the night are common in Cuba" and he was a part of a poster campaign in Havana that the authorities would certainly disapprove of.