“…at any moment the lights will go out…”
I hear these words on the other side of the phone line, last Monday. The weak voice and the slow expression were more than enough symptoms, to perceive that my brother pulls the extra from the extra, and that in only few hours his body could fade away. How painful! How sad! What impotence! To feel that a love one is spending his last bit of energy, to be able to talk few minutes with his beloved family and waiting for his case to be reviewed with all guarantees. However, surprisingly and unfortunately they still keep him in his cell, after 36 days of a hunger strike. We have approached the headquarters of the Ministry of the Interior, and yesterday we decided to go to the prison, with the purpose of requesting his transfer to a hospital. All the prison officials claim that his vital signs are “stable” and that is the reason why they have decided not to move him out of his cell. We have consulted doctors, friends of ours, and they have explained the involution of the body after several weeks of refusal to take in food, where one of the first body systems to fail is the cardiovascular. Although apparently his vital signs do not reveal an abnormal clinical situation, my brother is in a stage that needs special attention. He could be developing an infection, because the body starts to turn against itself. A blood test would rule out the suspicion of anemia, and as a consequence the need of a blood transfusion. The pulse can change in only seconds, bringing the lost of conscience or even a heart attack, not to mention a hypoglycemia. Today we will go to the Public Health Ministry to make them aware of the case, and after that, we will see what attitude they will assume.
Nevertheless tomorrow, Thursday, we have scheduled an interview with the medical team that is taking care of my brother, because is not only his health in question, but that his life is in danger and the medical responsibility for the decision of not sending him to the hospital will not fall through the cracks. The phrase ”at any time the lights will go out” I can not take it out of my mind and at the same time the pain I am feeling, it fills me with the courage to continue fighting on his behalf.
I need INTERNATIONAL HELP. The voice of the world is heard loud and clear, ours is barely heard, and Yamil’s is intertwined with of us who sympathize with him. Let us put our voices together and prevent this tragedy from having a fatal outcome that in time could be prevented.
Yadaimí Domínguez Ramos
(sister of the CubanAmerican prisoner in Cuba: Yamil Domínguez Ramos)
Translated by: Mari Mesa Contreras