(WASHINGTON) – U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the Middle East and North Africa Subcommittee, released the following statement regarding Cuba’s designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
“I am relieved that the State Department spokesman stated today that it is not true that Cuba is being considered to be taken off the State Sponsor of Terrorism list. The Castro brothers align themselves with the likes of Ahmadinejad of Iran, al-Assad of Syria, Qaddafi of Libya before his death, along with terrorist groups, such as the FARC and the ETA. Just this week, Ali Saeedlou, Vice-President for International Affairs for fellow State Sponsor of Terrorism Iran, is in Cuba visiting the Castro brothers to expand its collaboration between these pariah states.
No one can ignore the well documented threats of the Cuban Intelligence Service (CIS). CIS has a longstanding record of expanding their active espionage operation against the U.S. The WASP network was an example of Cuban spies sent to the U.S. to harm our interests and kill American citizens. The Cuban Five were convicted of trying to penetrate U.S. military installations and the Ana Belen Montes case reaffirmed the intention of the Castro regime to compromise U.S. national security operations and activities. Montes also provided highly classified information to the Cuban regime which is believed to have caused the death of U.S. servicemen operating in Latin America. The Cuban regime also harbors fugitives of the U.S. justice system, including cop killers, and continues to provide support for Iran’s nuclear ambitions.
It is important to keep Cuba on the list of State Sponsors of Terrorism because the secretive and dangerous regime conspires with extremist elements around the world and, due to its proximity to the US, poses a threat to our national security.”