Human Rights for Cubans Should Not Be Negotiable
(Washington, D.C.) – President Obama and Cuba’s Raul Castro today met on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly. This is the second meeting between Obama and Castro since the U.S. and Cuba restored diplomatic relations late last year, and the first after the U.S. opened an embassy on the island.
Jorge Lima, VP of Operations and Policy for The LIBRE Initiative, released the following statement:
“The United States must be an outspoken leader on the critical question of human rights for the people of Cuba. President Obama should take advantage of every opportunity to press the Castro dictatorship on the issue. Amidst the opening of a U.S. embassy on the island, we still see oppression of dissent on the island and Cubans risking their lives to flee the Castro regime.
Opening an embassy or allowing vacations in Cuba does not hide the fact that the Castro regime continues to impoverish the country and silence anyone who dare speak against it. Castro has not been pressed to concede on what should have been the first requirement for reestablishing relations with the U.S. – the human rights of its own people. This administration needs to take a stronger stance against repression and dictatorship, otherwise we are effectively condoning it.”