Two US Senators ask the EU to take advantage of their economic relationship with Cuba to achieve the liberation of political prisoners

The Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee and the Vice President of the Intelligence Committee, Robert Menendez and Marco Rubio, have sent a letter to the E

Two US Senators ask the EU to take advantage of their economic relationship with Cuba to achieve the liberation of political prisoners

The Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee and the Vice President of the Intelligence Committee, Robert Menendez and Marco Rubio, have sent a letter to the European Union asking that "take advantage of its economic relationship with Cuba to achieve democratic progress in that country" .

In the letter both senators ask the head of the European diplomacy, Josep Borrell, who "expand their assistance to democracy activists and human rights defenders" in Cuba and that "reevaluate the political dialogue and cooperation agreement to ensure that allows the European Union to facilitate the progress of the Cuban people "and achieve, at least" the liberation of all political prisoners ".

The Political Dialogue Agreement and Cooperation was signed in 2016, when Havana was the only country in Latin America that had no agreement of these characteristics with Brussels, and regulates the always difficult relations between the EU and Cuba. The pact arrived at a time of relative reforms in Cuba to the Socaire of the moderate liberalization launched by Raúl Castro in exchange for the restoration of diplomatic relations with the United States. Since then, however, the Cuban dictatorship has hardened at all levels, especially after the arrival of Miguel Díaz Canel to the Presidency, two years ago, and the General Secretariat of the Communist Party, last April.

Despite its rhetoric, Cuba has been extremely sensitive to international pressure, as the letter recalls. In 2003, after a wave of arrests of dissidents that led to 75 defenders of democracy to jail, the EU suspended collaboration with the Castro regime. One of the detainees in that surge wave was José Daniel Ferrer García, who would be released at parole eight years later. In 2002, as the letter remembers, international pressure forced Havana to commute a new sentence to Ferrer to four years in jail by house arrest.

Menendez and Rubio have a considerable weight in the US. Both are of Cuban origin, and the first exerts an enormous capacity of action on the foreign policy of Joe Biden through the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee. During the presidency of Donald Trump, the Rubio Republican had a huge influence - promptly, directing the action of the Department of State in practice - in Washington's policy towards Cuba.

Date Of Update: 08 December 2021, 13:34

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