Cuban political prisoner Efrén Fernández Fernández started a hunger strike late last week to protest his transfer from a medical facility back to prison, according to Oswaldo Payá, head of the Christian Liberation Movement (MCL)[in Spanish].

Fernández, an MCL activist imprisoned since the "black spring" crackdown of 2003, had been receiving treatment for skin and intestinal problems no doubt brought on by and/or aggravated by his more than seven years in the Castro gulag. He is demanding that he be given the care he needs.

Fernández is serving a 12-year sentence, but the Catholic Church in Cuba has said he is one of 52 prisoners set to be released under a deal negotiated by the church, the Spanish government and the Castro dictatorship.

for the freedom of all cuban political prisoners
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