Expected Removal of Cuba From State Sponsors of Terrorism List a Miscarriage of Justice and Undermines U.S. National Security, Says Ros-Lehtinen

Apr 7, 2015

Expected Removal of Cuba From State Sponsors of Terrorism List a Miscarriage of Justice and Undermines U.S. National Security, Says Ros-Lehtinen

(Washington, DC) – U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the Middle East and North Africa Subcommittee, made the following statement regarding news reports that the Obama Administration is expected to remove Cuba from the State Sponsors of Terrorism (SST) list. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:

“The expected decision by President Obama to remove Cuba from the State Sponsors of Terrorism list would be nothing short of a miscarriage of justice borne out of political motivations not rooted in reality. It would be a miscarriage of justice for the 11 million Cubans on the island suffering under the oppressive Castro regime and a miscarriage of justice for the millions of Cubans who risked their lives to flee the island with the hopes of one day returning to a free and democratic Cuba. It would be a miscarriage of justice for the victims of Cuban terror, especially for the family and friends of the victims of the Brothers to the Rescue shootdown and slain New Jersey State Trooper Werner Foerster, whose murderer, Joanne Chesimard, has been living openly as a fugitive in Cuba with support from the Castro regime.

“U.S. law is clear that a country cannot be removed from the SST list if it has not changed its policies and so long as the country is still supporting acts of international terrorism, but President Obama is yet again willing to circumvent the law by ignoring the Castro brothers continued policies in support of terrorism by providing safe haven to foreign terrorist organizations and repeated violations of international sanctions. The Obama administration is so desperate to open up an embassy in Havana at any cost that it is willing to concede to Castro’s demand to remove Cuba from the SST list, serving only to further embolden the regime and undermine U.S. national security.”

“It was only 4 weeks ago that a huge shipment on its way to Cuba was purposely mislabeled as grain products when in fact it was a large batch of gunpowder, detonators, artillery shells, and other explosives on a Chinese ship. In 2013, Cuba was caught illegally shipping MiG fighter jets and weapons disguised under tons of sugar on a North Korean ship, in violation of UN international sanctions. The Obama administration chose to look the other way in both cases. We should not reward the criminal behavior of a repressive regime that insists on continuing to abuse human rights.”