Informacion economica sobre Cuba

Despite Mr. Obama’s ‘engagement,’ Cuba continues its repression
By Editorial Board July 1 at 3:37 PM

IN ANNOUNCING the reopening of the U.S. embassy in Havana, President
Obama said “nobody expects Cuba to be transformed overnight” by his
policy of “engagement.” That’s just as well because in the first six
months of Mr. Obama’s normalization of relations with the Communist
regime, most indicators of human rights on the island have moved in the
wrong direction.

Since December, there have been more than 3,000 political detentions in
Cuba, including 641 in May and 220 on Sunday alone, according to
dissident sources. Most were accompanied by beatings; at least 20
detainees required medical treatment in May. After Cuba was invited for
the first time to the Summit of the Americas in Panama, regime thugs
attacked the civil society activists who also showed up.

“Some of us had hoped .?.?. that there would be a stop to — or at least
a lessening of — the beatings” of peaceful demonstrators, wrote activist
Mario Lleonart recently, “but we now know that what is happening is
precisely the opposite.”

Visits by Americans to Cuba are reportedly up by a third, including
plenty of political delegations. But in the months after Mr. Obama
announced the diplomatic opening in December, there was also a
120 percent increase in Cubans seeking to flee to the United States.
Many worry that once relations are normalized, the United States will
stop accepting refugees; according to recent polling, more than half of
Cubans would like to leave the country.

Mr. Obama eased regulations on U.S. food sales, but imports of American
food to the island, controlled by the state, dropped by half in the
first three months of 2015, compared with last year. Netflix announced
that Cubans could stream its service — but the charge for an hour of
access to one of the few government-controlled Internet hotspots equals
10 percent of a typical government worker’s monthly salary, and
independent Cuban Web sites are blocked.

We don’t oppose diplomatic contacts or U.S. embassies in countries such
as Cuba, in principle. But the results of Mr. Obama’s initiative so far
underline the opportunity he missed in not requiring even modest
alleviation of the dictatorship’s repression in exchange for what
amounts to a political and economic bailout of a failing regime. Mr.
Obama could have sought a guarantee, for example, that the Ladies in
White, formed by the families of political prisoners, be allowed to
carry out their peaceful weekly marches without arrests or beatings; as
it is, attacks on the group have increased sharply.

The State Department also could have insisted that U.S. diplomats have
unrestricted access to average Cubans and could have rejected the
regime’s demands that ongoing democracy programs be canceled. Instead, a
senior U.S. official said that, while access would improve, the State
Department had accepted “constraints” on personnel in Cuba similar to
those in other “restrictive environments,” and that services provided by
the existing interest section, such as Internet access, “might not be so
necessary.”

Thanks to congressional opposition, no U.S. ambassador to Cuba may be
confirmed anytime soon. But Mr. Obama himself, according to his
spokesman, is eager to visit Havana. We’d like to hope that the
president will restrain himself until the Castro regime shows some sign
of delivering the improvements in human rights he says are the goal of
his outreach. So far, U.S.-Cuba rapprochement is looking entirely one-sided.

Source: Despite Mr. Obama’s ‘engagement,’ Cuba continues its repression
– The Washington Post –
http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-reality-in-cuba/2015/07/01/5b891ba2-1b6a-11e5-bd7f-4611a60dd8e5_story.html


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