News and Facts about Cuba

Human Rights Still Suffer In Cuba

06-04-2012

Still Suffer In Cuba

Citizens are harassed and intimidated to keep them from speaking out on

the island nation's political conditions.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has sent Congress the

Department's assessment of human rights around the world during 2011.

The reports, required by law, evaluate the human rights performance of

the governments of every country and a number of territories, and

lawmakers as well as authorities in the executive branch use the reports

to help shape our nation's foreign policies.

2011 saw some positive trends, particularly in the Middle East and North

Africa. Tunisia, the cradle of the Arab Spring, held successful,

transparent elections for a Constituent Assembly, which in turn elected

a former as the country's interim . In

Burma, the government took important steps toward political reform and

released more than 200 political prisoners. And in Colombia, the

government has been working to improve justice in human rights cases.

But problems persist in many countries and overall there are a number of

disturbing trends. Flawed elections, restrictions on the of

, assembly, or association, censorship or intimidation of the

media and attempts to control the activities of civil society and

non-governmental groups indicate erosion of respect for human rights in

some countries.

As in previous years, human rights conditions in Cuba are a particular

concern. Most reported abuses were official acts committed at the

direction of a government dominated by the Communist Party, so the

perpetrators enjoyed impunity for their actions. Citizens are harassed

and intimidated to keep them from speaking out on the island nation's

political conditions. There was an increase in the number of political

activists detained for speaking out. The number of short-term detentions

in December 2011 rose to the highest level in 30 years.

The Cuban government also placed severe limitations on

and press, restricted and limited freedom of

religion. Worker rights were restricted as well, particularly the

freedom to form independent unions.

The United States is committed to the work of advancing universal

rights, building the partnerships that will move us forward, helping

every man, woman, and child live up to their potential. In cases of

nations such as Cuba, we are also committed to speaking out for those

unable to do so for themselves.

http://www.voanews.com/policy/editorials/Human-Rights-Still-Suffer-In-Cuba–157025445.html

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