The Cuban State Security tried to boycott the award given by the Patmos Institute every year. This Tuesday, and at the same time as the ceremony planned by the religious organization to be held to announce the winners, in the neighborhood of La Palma, in Havana, the host, the evangelical pastor Luis Maldonado, was summoned by the Police. The same call was received by religious Alejandro Hernández Cepero, who was imprisoned.
Those who received the Patmos Prize this year are the sisters María Cristina and Angélica Garrido and the brothers Jorge and Nadir Martín Perdomo, all of them political prisoners in Cuba. This is an award that, since 2014 and coincides with the day of the Protestant Reformation, October 31, honors “believers who are consistent with their faith” in the Island.
In an audio sent to his friends, Maldonado said agents and police cars surrounded the meeting area. However, some of the prisoners’ relatives arrived, such as Jorge and Nadir’s mother, Marta Perdomo.
As the organization indicated in a statement, this is the first time it has been given to more than one person. In this case, four Cubans were imprisoned for their participation in the historic demonstrations on July 11, 2021 (11J) in San José de las Lajas, Mayabeque.
“Among the thousands of prisoners in the historic days of 11J, the names of these four fervent believers show their strong belief in the faith”
Jorge and Nadir Martín Perdomo were sentenced, respectively, to eight and six years in prison for assault, contempt and public disorder; María Cristina Garrido, up to seven years in prison, and her sister Angélica, up to three. Same dam planted, They also reported torture and ill-treatment in prison.
On the other hand, the relatives of the four were harassed by the State Security, which, for example, prevented the mother of the Martín brothers, Marta Perdomo, from being regulated.
“Among the thousands of prisoners in the historic days of 11J, the names of these four fervent believers show their strong belief in the faith, which is proven by these more than two years of imprisonment,” said – said the Patmos Institute in a statement.
“Even if such qualities are not exclusive to them, since Cuban prisons for more than six decades have been filled with women and men,” the NGO continues, they want to “symbolize these two pairs of evangelical brother all believers, who, because they are consistent with their faith, were or remain now in any prisons in Cuba.”
Since its creation, the Patmos award has been given to Catholics, such as Dagoberto Valdés, Amador Blanco Hernández, José Conrado Alegría, Eduardo Cardet Concepción, Roberto de Jesús Quiñones, Martha Beatriz Roque Cabello and Ernesto Borges Pérez, and evangelicals, such as by Oscar Elías Biscet or Lorenzo Rosales Fajardo.