The United States once again criticized the exile imposed by the island’s authorities on human rights defenders and those who dissent from the regime in Havana, who are prevented from returning to the country.
On this occasion, the statement comes from the United States ambassador to the United Nations Human Rights Council, Michèle Taylor.
“The Cuban government uses forced exile as another attempt to silence human rights defenders and intimidate critics of the regime. We publicly condemn these actions,” the US representative wrote on Twitter, referring to the island’s regime’s refusal to allow activist and university professor Omara Ruiz Urquiola to return to Cuba.
The diplomat reproduced on her social networks a brief statement published on July 8 by the United Nations Special Rapporteur for Human Rights, Mary Lawlor, who appealed to the Cuban diplomatic representation in that organization to allow Ruiz to return to Cuba. Urquiola.
The professor tried to return to the island on June 25 from the airport in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, but as she has done with other human rights activists, the airline did not authorize her boarding on orders from the Cuban immigration authorities.
“I have received information that Omara Ruiz Urquiola, the sister of defender Ariel Ruiz Urquiola, has been denied re-entry into Cuba. Omara went to the US after criticizing the cancer treatment she was receiving in Cuba. She should be allowed to return,” Lawlor wrote on his Twitter account, calling on the Permanent Mission of Cuba to the United Nations Office in Geneva and other international organizations based in Switzerland.
Cuban authorities use forced exile as another attempt to silence human rights defenders and intimidate anyone who wants to criticize the regime. We publicly condemn these actions by the Cuban government. https://t.co/KVJAOLYGTo— Ambassador Michèle Taylor (@USAmbHRC) July 15, 2022
The US Embassy in Havana also condemned the situation of Ruiz Urquiola and denounced that the Cuban regime uses forced exile as a weapon to silence dissidents on the island.
“We publicly condemn these actions by the Cuban government,” the diplomatic headquarters said.
Given the denial of entry to Cuba for the professor, her brother, the Cuban scientist and activist Ariel Ruiz Urquiola, held a hunger and thirst strike for 12 days in front of the headquarters of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva, Switzerland.
The Ruiz Urquiola brothers have been confronting the Cuban regime for years, from the island, where they were expelled from their jobs, harassed, repressed and imprisoned (in the case of Ariel) and also from abroad, where they have been part of numerous initiatives to condemn the communist dictatorship.
The prohibition of entry to the country is included in Cuban laws through ARTICLE 24.1. of the Cuban Migration Law, which considers that entry into the national territory is inadmissible for people who have “history of terrorist activities, human trafficking, drug trafficking, money laundering, arms trafficking or others prosecuted internationally”; those who are “linked to acts against humanity, human dignity, collective health or persecuted by virtue of international treaties to which Cuba is a party”; those who organize, stimulate, carry out or participate in “hostile actions against the political, economic and social foundations of the Cuban State”; “when reasons of Defense and National Security so advise”; or are prohibited from entering the country “for being declared undesirable or expelled”.