- The Island’s dissidence has insisted it has record of only 39 releases
14YMEDIO, Havana, 12 January 2015 — Cuba has released the 53 prisoners that it had promised to free in talks with the US according to an announcement Monday by the US ambassador to the UN, Samantha Power. According to these reports, the liberations of those prisoners who had been missing was completed this weekend, and the White House will send to Congress the complete list to then make it public.
Dissident groups such as the Cuban Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation (CCDHRN) and the Patriotic Union of Cuba (UNPACU) have insisted that they have until now only confirmed 39 releases since last Wednesday. “We will see what happens in the coming days,” Elizardo Sanchez, spokesman for the CCDHRN, has said.
Power has admitted that there were differences in Congress about the way to act, but has assured that there is a common will to advance the rights of the Cuban people.
The Havana agreement was reached in July, according to Reuters, which also says that it is a question of “days and weeks” for Obama to begin exercising his executive powers to reduce the restrictions on trade and travel. The first changes could be announced, say officials, January 21st or 22nd when Roberta Jacobson, Latin American Deputy Secretary for the State Department, will arrive in Havana to begin the negotiations between Cuba and the United States.
Power has stressed that there are changes underway in Cuba, as also confirmed by the re-opening of the Embassy and the “democratic program” that the US will promote in its talks. Also, she explains that the future of the Guantanamo naval base has not been a topic on the table.
Translated by: MLK