Thursday, July 08, 2010

Cuba: 'Do not be fooled by Cuban regime's ploys'

U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Ranking Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, commented today on reports that approximately 50 Cuban political prisoners may soon released. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:

"Today, countless Cuban political prisoners remain languishing in the dungeons of the Castro regime. Their only crime? Standing up for the basic rights and human dignities of the Cuban people. Their only aspiration? To see the Cuban people live in freedom.

"Castro's thugs round up innocent Cubans merely for wanting freedom and democracy. They throw them in dark, squalid cells and cynically label these political prisoners as common criminals. Some die as a result of the torture they endure at the hands of their jailers. Others disappear into the abyss of repression, hidden from the outside world until they are callously used as tokens for the regime to barter with.

"For decades, the Cuban tyranny has used the long suffering prisoners of conscience as pawns to manipulate the international community into believing the charade that the Cuban dictatorship is anything but brutal and oppressive.

"Those who perish in Castro's dungeons deserve better than to be used as ploys by the Castro apparatus to extract concessions and financial rewards that will enable the regime to extend its stranglehold on the Cuban people.

"And the nightmare rages on. All those men and women being repressed in Cuba are imprisoned, whether or not they find themselves in an actual jail cell.

"We must not be fooled. Until all political prisoners are liberated; all political parties, labor unions, independent media are legalized and allowed to operate freely; until the Cuban people are able to exercise their universal rights free of coercion and intimidation, maximum pressure must be exerted on the Cuban tyranny."

Source: House Committee on Foreign Affairs (Republican Office)