July 28, 2021

Senate Committee Approves Resolution Reaffirming Congressional Support for Cuba’s Pro-Democracy Movement

Bipartisan resolution calls for holding the Cuban Regime accountable for its violent response to citizens demonstrating for basic freedoms, democracy and respect for human rights

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), ranking member and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today were joined by Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), ranking member of the subcommittee overseeing the Western Hemisphere, and Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) in releasing the following statements lauding the committee’s approval of their bipartisan resolution condemning the Cuban government’s violent response to the thousands of Cuban citizens who have taken to the streets to peacefully call for respect for basic human rights and the end of the dictatorship in Cuba. The resolution moves next to the floor for consideration by the full Senate.

“I am glad the committee passed our resolution today expressing solidarity with the people of Cuba in their pursuit of freedom. The spontaneous demonstrations we saw across Cuba a couple of weeks ago revealed how determined they are to remove the socialist dictatorship that has ruled the island for almost six decades,” said Ranking Member Risch. “Passing this resolution is a good first step, but as the administration is engaged in a seven-month long Cuba policy review, I hope this committee can hold a hearing on this matter soon.”

“As the Díaz Canel regime continues its campaign of violent repression, disappearances, and arbitrary imprisonment to try to crush Cuba’s pro-democracy movement, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee is speaking with one voice of absolute solidarity with the thousands of Cubans risking it all to liberate themselves from the iron hand of dictatorship that has crushed their spirit for more than 60 years,” said Chairman Menendez. “I am very proud to lead this effort to make it clear Democrats and Republicans are united in saying we will not overlook, romanticize or try to explain away the Cuban regime’s brutal oppression of simple human and democratic rights, or its total disdain for the aspirations of its own people. I look forward to continue working with my colleagues and with President Biden to make certain the U.S. continues doing our part to stand with the brave Cuban men and women struggling to forge a political opening in their country and to demand that the regime respect their fundamental human rights.”

“As the oppressive Communist Cuban regime continues to hold the people of Cuba hostage after 62 years of repression and constant abuses, I welcome the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations’ passage of this important bipartisan resolution,” said Senator Rubio. “The U.S. must stand with the courageous people of Cuba as they fight for their basic freedoms and against tyranny.”

“This month, we saw decades of deep Cuban frustration over inept, corrupt, and cruel governance boil over. While I have long argued for a change in the failed U.S. policy toward Cuba, the Cuban people know the real source of their island's lost potential rests squarely with the ruling dictatorship,” said Senator Durbin. “I’m pleased the Senate Foreign Relations Committee passed our bipartisan resolution out of Committee, and I will continue to stand with the Cuban people in their peaceful demand for a brighter future.”

Find a copy of the Resolution here.

In addition to Risch, Menendez, Rubio, and Durbin, the Senate resolution was cosponsored by Senate Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere Chairman Tim Kaine (D-Va.), and Senators Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Alex Padilla (D-Calif.), Mark Warner (D-Va.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.), Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.), and Ted Cruz (R-Texas).

A concurrent resolution was introduced in the House of Representatives by Representatives Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL-23), Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL-25), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere Albio Sires (D-NJ-08), Charlie Crist (D-FL-13), Kathy Castor (D-FL-14), Val Demings (D-FL-10), Ted Deutch (D-FL-22), Lois Frankel (D-FL-21), Anthony Gonzalez (R-OH-16), Al Lawson (D-FL-05), Nicole Malliotakis (R-NY-11), Michael McCaul (R-TX-10), Stephanie Murphy (D-FL-07), Chris Smith (R-NJ-04), Darren Soto (D-FL-09), and Frederica Wilson (D-FL-24).

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