Cuban dissident Guillermo Farinas has been awarded the Sakharov prize, the EU’s top human rights award.
The 48-year-old ended a 135-day hunger strike in July after Cuba agreed to release 52 political prisoners.
Speaking from his home in Santa Clara, the prize winner called on Europe to continue to pressure Cuba on human rights:
“It’s important that right now European governments, that will soon decide on a common position on Cuba, should applaud the Cuban government for liberating dozens of political prisoners, but at the same time, they should be told its not enough. Europe’s common position is that there should be an improvement in human rights and democratic advances and none of these have really happened.”
As Europe bestowed the award on Farinas the Cuban government announced that five more dissidents will be freed.
Farinas has carried out more than 20 hunger strikes in the last two decades for various causes.