Alex Hernandez Turns Up in “El Chipote” Days after being Kidnapped

Political prisoner Alex Hernandez was abducted for the second time on August 24, 2021.

Relatives do not know what the government is accusing him of to rationalize his arrest, and they demand he be included on the list of political prisoners.

By Confidencial

HAVANA TIMES – Alex Hernandez, a leader of the Blue and White National Unity movement (UNAB), was seen by his brother Uriel Quintanilla last Wednesday in the prison complex known as the “New El Chipote.” This is the same place where he had gone several times searching for his brother without being given any information. Neither the Police nor the Interior Ministry have officially reported his arrest.

Since Monday, August 23, “I showed up at ‘El Chipote,’ and was told that they had no information about Alex,” Quintanilla said. Faced with this situation, he kept going back there to inquire about the whereabouts of his brother. On the third day the Police accepted some bottles of water (from Uriel), so “I assumed he was there,” he said.

On the fourth day Quintanilla filed a writ demanding proof of life in Managua’s courts and four days later he received the “go ahead” to see him.  However, that same day a judge was assigned to his case, and when he went to see his brother, he was told there were already charges filed against him and he couldn’t be seen.    

Devoid of legal resource, Uriel went to the “El Nuevo Chipote” last Wednesday to ask if he could see his brother, just like relatives of the other political prisoners imprisoned within the context of the electoral process, and surprisingly, they let him visit Alex for 30 minutes.

“I found that Alex is relatively well, because nobody is really well when they are locked up for something they didn’t do,” said Quintanilla. At the time of the visit Alex still felt pain in his shoulder from a blow he received at the time of his arrest, but “his morale is good so far, and we will see how it goes with the passage of time,” he continued.

Asking to make the case of Alex Hernandez visible

Quintanilla does not know the reasons they have his brother in jail, but he is clear that the “backdrop is political,” and he asks Nicaraguans to help him make this case visible.

“My brother is a political prisoner because he is involved with the Blue and White opposition movement,” Quintanilla said. “I need for him to appear on the list of political prisoners. I want to see him on posters, and need his case to be visible,” so that at some point he will “manage to get out.”

In the last nine days the Public Ministry has accused 31 political leaders and independent professionals for allegedly committing the crimes of conspiracy to undermine national integrity or money laundering.

During the visit, Quintanilla learned that Hernandez shared a cell with another political prisoner and for now is receiving three meals a day. However, he noticed that, like most of the political prisoners, Alex has already begun to lose weight.

Read more from Nicaragua here on Havana Times.