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Who is Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet?

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Who is Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet?

Mensaje por Huésped el Jue Oct 04, 2007 9:16 am

Oscar Elias Biscet Gonzalez was born of humble origin in Havana Cuba on July 20, 1961. He is founder and president of the Lawton Foundation for Human Rights, an organization considered illegal by Cuban authorities, which peacefully promotes the defense of all human rights through nonviolent civil disobedience.
In 1985 Dr. Biscet obtained his degree as a specialist in internal medicine and the following year made his first Public protest against the long hours without pay Cuban physicians are subject to and was suspended professionally for a year from Hospital Nacional. In 1987 he started practicing and teaching medicine at the Obstetric Pediatric Hospital Hijas de Galicia in Havana. By the late 1980s Dr. Biscet manifested himself openly against the communist Cuban regime and in 1994 a case file was opened in which he was officially accused of being "dangerous" by Cuban authorities.
By 1997, Dr. Biscet founded the Lawton Foundation for Human Rights in collaboration with fellow members of the peaceful opposition movement and conducted a clandestine ten month research study at Hijas de Galicia Hospital documenting unofficial statistical data on abortion techniques. In this investigative report many Cuban mothers testified that their babies were killed after being born alive, a common practice in hospitals throughout the island. "Rivanol: A Method to Destroy Life" was made public on April 1998 and officially delivered to the Cuban government with a letter to Fidel Castro June 9, 1998 denouncing the Cuban National Health System for genocide. This study was translated from Spanish to English and sent to The Convention of the Rights of the Child in Geneva Switzerland. This study was dedicated to the 23 children on the "13 de Marzo" tugboat who crowned when Cuban gun boats purposefully sank the boat full of would-be refugees.
On February 1998, Dr. Biscet was officially expelled from the Cuban National Health System and has since been unable to perform as a physician in his own country. Elsa Morejón, Dr. Biscet’s wife and a nurse by profession, is presently unemployed due to her husband’s human rights activities. Because of this the couple and their adolescent son were evicted from their name on March 1998, and have had to depend on the charity of friends to survive
During the historic mass celebrated by Pope John Paul I in Havana on January 1998, the Lawton Foundation for Human rights claimed publicly, through banners and posters, freedom for all Cuban political prisoners. Dr Biscet has verbally claimed justice in the streets in before tribunals where arbitrary trials are to take place, and has demanded freedom of religion and expression in public processions. Also, The Lawton Foundation, with other human rights groups established a school on nonviolent civil disobedience This human rights organization has written letters worldwide to physicians, religious leaders, U.N officials, health organizations, human rights groups and dignitaries, asking solidarity for Cuba. The Lawton Foundation has convened peaceful marches at parks on the anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in December, a document they have handed out in the streets to Cuban citizens on a monthly basis, and has denounced human rights abuses in Havana at press conferences where the international press has been invited
One such conference took place on March 26, 1999. The Lawton Foundation joined other human rights activists declaring before the international press that the following objectives should be accomplished in Cuba through nonviolent means, considering the Cuban nation as one, including those living on the island and in exile.
1. All political prisoners must be freed.
2. All articles that violate the human rights of man should be abolished.
3. Democracy should be reestablished in Cuba.
From June 7 to July 16, 1999, one of the most significant events carried out by the peaceful Cuban opposition movement took place under the leadership of the Lawton Foundation. A group of human rights activists in Havana began a forty day liquid fast to demand the release of all political prisoners and draw attention to the violation of Human Rights in Cuba. This activity spread throughout the island and thousands of Cubans joined in 54 fasting sites. In addition, their compatriots in exile around the world joined the fasting in show of solidarity. Members of the international press covered the story as foreign diplomats visited the small apartment at Tamarindo 34 in Havana.
Dr. Biscet was arrested on November 3, 1999 and was held at the prison of the Technical Department of Investigation located at Cien and Aldabó streets in Havana. According to Sergio Hernández – the state appointed defense attorney - files disclosed that Dr. Biscet had been officially accused of so called crimes of "dishonoring national symbols," "public disorder," and "inciting delinquent behavior" for which The State Prosecutor of the Republic of Cuba was asking a ten year jail sentence.
Two events were connected to these accusations. In the first event on February 22, 1999, Dr. Biscet was accused of “disorderly conduct" for staging a peaceful pro-life demonstration outside Hijas de Galicia Hospital in Havana when he and Migdalia Rosado, another peaceful human rights activist, were savagely beaten. The hospital’s director, Dr. Laura Fernandez, and Dr. Norma Silva, the leader of the communist party, led this attack perpetrated by a mob of physicians, ex-colleagues of Dr. Biscet. The second incident, which took place a few days prior to the Ibero-American summit in Havana, caused Dr. Biscet to be accused of all three afore mentioned crimes. The Lawton Foundation and numerous members of the opposition movement held a press conference on October 28, 1999 to announce a peaceful march through the streets of Havana to claim freedom for all political prisoners and human rights for Cuba. At his conference, two Cuban flags were displayed in an inverted vertical position as a sign of protest for the human rights violations in Cuba (those human rights activists attempting to participate in said march were brutally beaten by government sponsored mobs and two are still in jail). As a result of these accusations, Dr. Biscet was sentenced to a three year prison term and served it at the Cuba Si prison near Holguin, Oriente. Located at the eastern part of Cuba, 768 km from his home in Havana, making family visits extremely difficult during those long years.
Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet González, a devout Christian, follower of the philosophies of Henry David Thoreau, Martin Luther King, Jr, Mahatma Gandhi and the Dalai Lama was arbitrarily detained 26 times from June 1998 to November 1999. This Cuban physician, a prisoner of conscience, has been mistreated physically and psychologically, suffering beatings, threats, humiliations, blackmails, intimidating interrogations and incarcerations in underground cells along with insane individuals and common criminals. On several occasions, State Security tried to subject Dr. Biscet to psychiatric examinations at Mazorra (the main Psychiatric Hospital in Havana) and pressured him to leave Cuba, to which he responded that he will never abandon his country.
After he finished serving his three year sentence in late 2002, Dr. Biscet was released and allowed to return to his home. Only 36 days later, when he was preparing to meet with a delegation of human rights activists from Matanzas, the Cuban Secret Police detained him along with many of the delegates. After several months in jail, Dr. Biscet was again accused of activities dangerous to state security. However, this time he was given a 25 year prison term, which he is presently serving at the Pinar del Rio prison system in western Cuba, 162 km from his home. Since his arrival at the prison he has been tortured on numerous occasions, and denied communication with the outside. Dr. Biscet has been placed in a tapiada (a humid, dark cell with no sunlight) both in the main prison cells, as well as below ground with a common criminal for up to 3 weeks. In 2003 his wife was only permitted to visit him once with no martial visits allowed. Currently in the year 2004 only one visit every three months is permitted and the marital visits are every 5-6 months.
During his 36 days of freedom from November to December of 2002, Dr. Biscet completed his work on the Democratic Principles for Cuba. This work has achieved worldwide acceptance.
Firm on his demands for justice until Cuba obtains its freedom, Dr. Biscet is in good spirits. On a recent prison visit, Dr. Biscet sent a message to his wife Elsa, asking his Cuban brothers and sisters on the island and in exile to join in prayer with the international community for freedom of all political prisoners and freedom of expression in Cuba. He also expressed his gratitude to all those concerned for his well-being, particularly his colleagues in the medical profession.
On May 1, 2004, Dr. Biscet was the recipient of a Doctorate Degree in Honoris Causa, presented by Miami Dade College in Miami, Florida. As of July 3, 2004 he is the Honorary President of the Pan American Cuban Medical Convention in Miami Florida, a distinct honor awarded by his medical colleagues in exile. Both honors were awarded in recognition for his work on human rights, for promoting nonviolent civil disobedience and for his dedication to the struggle to bring democracy, justice, and liberty to Cuba.
We demand the immediate release of Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet Gonzalez, so that this peaceful human rights activist may continue his struggle for justice in Cuba. We urgently ask all men and women of good will, the international press, human rights organizations, world health organizations and dignitaries of democratic nations to denounce before the Cuban government the unjust incarceration, criminal accusations, and imminent trial of this Cuban physician whose only crime is to honor the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in his own country.
For further information: Lawton Foundation for Human Rights
P.O. Box 43-0905
Miami, Florida 33243-0905, USA


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Re: Who is Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet?

Mensaje por LoriG el Jue Oct 04, 2007 9:39 am



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