Roberto Paciencia Writes to Alejandro Diaz
Copy of the letter from Roberto Paciencia to Alejandro Diaz Santiz. Photo: @Koman Ilel.
Unjustly imprisoned Roberto Paciencia Cruz, deprived of his freedom three years ago, wrote a letter to Alejandro Diaz Santiz, who has been imprisoned for 17 years. They met in the State Centre for Social Reinsertion for Prisoners (CERSS) No. 5 in San Cristobal de Las Casas, the prison where they began awareness and denouncement processes against the human rights violations against the prison population. Paciencia Cruz sent greetings to Diaz Santiz, who was sent to the State Prison No. 5 of the Federal Centre for Social Re-adaptation (Cefereso) in Villa Comaltitlan, Tapachula, Chiapas. Paciencia wrote, “Compa, we hope that you don’t feel alone; remember that your ‘ compañeros’ are on your case, we know that you have suffered a lot these 17 years, that injustice has deprived you of your freedom, the authorities have never been able to solve your case (sic).”
It should be remembered that Roberto Paciencia Cruz was imprisoned in August 2013 and has been in captivity since, although he has not been sentenced. Arrested without warrant and tortured in the following hours he recently became an adherent to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandon Jungle of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN). For his part, Alejandro Diaz Santiz was deprived of his freedom in 1999, “at the moment of his arrest he did not have a translator and he was accused of a crime he did not commit”, according to his attorney Lionel Rivero, as well as not having the economic resources for an adequate defence. Alejandro joined the Sixth and organized the prisoners’ collective “Sympathizers of the Voice of Amate” (Solidarios de la Voz del Amate). Nine months later, he was transferred to a maximum security prison even though his crime was not in federal jurisdiction, which was interpreted by the “No Estamos Todxs Workgroup” (GTNET) as “political revenge of the bad government against Alejandro, punished for supporting and raising awareness of the other prisoners and for refusing to be silent about the abuses against detained persons.” According to declarations of Alejandro’s relatives, he is isolated and has limited visits.
The letter from Paciencia for Diaz Santiz ended with an encouraging sentence: “keep your spirits up, compa, we will stay standing until we get our freedom and freedom for all our brother and sister prisoners in the country.”