Joint Statement on Cuban Government’s Continued Human Rights Abuses

Mar 20, 2013
Press Release

Chairman Matt Salmon of the Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere, and Ranking Member Albio Sires, issued the following statement condemning the Cuban government’s continued human rights abuses against pro-democracy activists on the island:

In another example of the deteriorating human rights situation in Cuba, this week we learned that Castro’s secret police had brutally attacked women and children at the home of Denia Fernandez, leader of a pro-democracy group ‘Ladies in White.’   Reports from brave activists on the ground confirmed that the home in the eastern municipality of Palma Soriano had been surrounded by Cuban government thugs known as the Rapid Response Brigade, wielding stones to intimidate the women and children inside.  There have been reports that some sustained severe head injuries at the hands of Castro’s agents.”

I am gravely concerned about the continued senseless acts of violence against champions of democracy perpetrated at the hands of the Cuban government. It is time for the international community to reengage and demand that peaceful groups like the Ladies in White are protected from government harassment and brutality” said Chairman Salmon. 

I call on the Department of State to use every tool in its toolbox to step up pressure on the Cuban regime to end  its human rights abuses, and its stranglehold on the freedom of expression and self-determination of the liberty-loving people of Cuba”, added Ranking Member Sires.