The United States remains dedicated to strengthening freedom and human rights for the people of Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela, said U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Brian Nichols.
“The detention and politically motivated trials of peaceful protesters in their home countries continue as an affront to democracy,” he said.
In Cuba, rather than addressing the needs of its people amidst an ongoing economic crisis, the government last year launched another round of political crackdowns, charging protestors with sedition, and sentencing them from between 7 and 30 years in prison.
Similarly, in Nicaragua, “the Ortega-Murillo regime has orchestrated a brutal crackdown on human rights in response to widespread opposition to the regime’s policies, resulting in the death of more than 320 Nicaraguan citizens,” added Assistant Secretary Nichols.
The United States continues to promote democratic governance throughout the hemisphere, including in Venezuela. As the country’s general elections approached in November 2021, the regime of Nicolas Maduro imprisoned more than 40 political opponents as well as several journalists, effectively rigging the outcome of the elections.
These political prisoners have been denied access to basic needs such as food, water, and medical care. Additionally, “[p]risoners have been tortured by beatings, submersion in water, electric shock, and exposure to cold temperatures. Female prisoners report suffering sexual violence by security forces,” said Assistant Secretary Nichols.
“The United Sates, joined by partners and allies across the globe, continues to press for the release of all those unjustly detained for political reasons . . . and conditions for free and fair elections that allow Venezuelans, Cubans, and Nicaraguans to choose their leaders for themselves,” said Assistant Secretary Nichols.
“We remain a steadfast partner of the Venezuelan, Cuban, and Nicaraguan people as they strive to build a better future for their country, one in which their leaders respect the human rights and freedoms of all citizens.”
The United States will continue to use the diplomatic and economic tools at our disposal to support Cubans, Nicaraguans, and Venezuelans in their quest for greater freedom, government accountability, and democracy.