FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
JULY 2, 2015
* * MEDIA ADVISORY * *
VICTIMS OF COMMUNISM STATEMENT ON U.S.-CUBA DEAL
“A slap in the face to the thousands who have suffered at the hands of Cuba’s communist regime…”
WASHINGTON D.C. – Yesterday President Obama announced his decision to restore diplomatic relations with Cuba and said the former Cold War enemies could reopen embassies in each other’s capitals beginning July 20. “This is what change looks like,” the President said.
Marion Smith, Executive Director of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, issued this statement in response to the U.S. and Cuba deal:
“President Obama’s diplomatic restoration plan with Cuba is based on the dangerous lie that lifting the trade embargo will yield political liberties for the Cuban people. Catering to Cuba’s communist government will only show other repressive governments that the Obama administration is willing to make significant concessions, diplomatic and otherwise, for next to nothing in return.
Last month, the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation honored renowned Cuban dissident Guillermo Farinas with the Truman-Reagan Medal of Freedom. Farinas has spoken forcefully about the crimes of the Castro regime, which he witnessed firsthand as a prisoner of conscience. This deal is a slap in the face to Farinas and thousands of others who have suffered at the hands of Cuba’s communist regime. The only beneficiaries of the unfortunate restoration plan will be the heinous Castro brothers whose crimes against their own nation and its people continue to this day.”
Smith adds, “Real, lasting political reform will never come to Cuba without structural change. That change must start with the end of Cuba’s communist dictatorship.”
The Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation is a Washington-based, non-profit educational and human rights organization devoted to commemorating the more than 100 million victims of communism around the world and the freedom of those still living under totalitarian regimes.
For more information or to schedule a press interview please contact Ayla Ybarra at [email protected] or (202) 629-9500.