Mises Cuba has announced that Nelson Rodríguez Chartrand is missing. The organization believes he was taken by state security forces.
In February, Ubaldo Herrera Hernandez, another member of Mises Cuba, was arrested by an undercover state agent along with fellow human rights activist Manuel Velazquez Visea. Since then, the two have been charged with additional crimes and placed in the notorious Melena II maximum security prison. Other libertarian activists on the island have been threatened and temporarily detained by Cuban officials.
Chartrand, an attorney and fierce critic of the Castro regime, was last seen on Monday at 11 p.m. heading toward the Benjamin Franklin libertarian library. He never made it to the building, the same location where Hernandez and Visea were arrested in February. Calls placed to hospitals in the area have found no record of Chartrand being admitted. He has also not turned up on any official arrest records.
If Chartrand was taken by state security, it may be in response to recent actions taken by Mises Cuba and other libertarian organizations on the island. Also on Monday night, a new libertarian library was launched in the province of Camaguey. This followed the recent launch of the Cuban Libertarian Party founded earlier this month. Mr. Chartrand’s own article about the launch ominously noted that state security told a member of the organization “the project will last until the regime allows it.”
As he went on to write:
We will not be overcome by fear. As the Greek saying goes:
“Society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in.” We do not fear reprisals about our bodies, because our ideas will transcend and I will get freedom. We do not fear any attacks against our bodies, because our ideas will transcend and achieve freedom.
Our hopes and prayers are with the family and friends of Mr. Chartrand, Hernandez, and Visea, as well as with all those willing to risk their safety promoting liberty in communist Cuba.
Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito.