Letter to President Biden demanding him to remove Cuba from the list of state sponsors of terror

May 23, 2022

President Biden, 

We are pleased that you have recently announced new policies towards Cuba that will help ease travel restrictions and help Cuban-Americans support and connect with their families. We are writing to ask that in addition to these measures, you also take Cuba off the list of State Sponsors of Terrorism. 

As you are aware, in the last days of the outgoing Trump administration, then Secretary of State Mike Pompeo added Cuba back onto the list of state sponsors of terrorism, from where it had been just removed in 2015 by the Obama-Biden administration.  After a significant review, the Obama-Biden White House certified that “(i) the Government of Cuba has not provided any support for international terrorism during the preceding 6-month period; and (ii) the Government of Cuba has provided assurances that it will not support acts of international terrorism in the future.”   

The re-designation of Cuba to the list was purportedlyfor acts of international terrorism in granting safe harbor to terrorists,” presumably for serving as a co-guarantor with Norway of the Peace Accords between the Colombian government and the FARC, a known guerrilla group.  The FARC’s insurgent activities years ago during the civil strife in Colombia does not fit the definition of international terrorism, and the FARC representatives were in Cuba as part of an internationally recognized process of peace negotiations supported by the United States, Norway, Colombia and other nations. 

By being on the list, Cuba is subjected to a series of sanctions and international financial restrictions that limit Cuba’s ability to carry out critical financial transactions, including those needed to advance its efforts to combat the pandemic. The economic deprivations to which U.S. sanctions contribute have resulted in the mass migration of Cubans that is currently a major challenge to U.S. interests in border security, as well as to a humanitarian crisis for the very Cuban people that your administration claims to support.

Removing Cuba from the list would facilitate Cuba’s ability to access critical foreign assistance and humanitarian aid, including as it prepares to assist with vaccine distribution globally.

When the Obama-Biden Administration certified the removal of Cuba from the list in 2015, the White House you served in as Vice-President stated that the United States would “continue to have differences with the Cuban government, but our concerns over a wide range of Cuba’s policies and actions fall outside the criteria that is relevant to whether to rescind Cuba’s designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism.”  

We believe the exact same situation exists today. The United States does have clear differences with the Cuban government, but we also have both national and international interests in supporting efforts to combat the coronavirus and to mitigate Cuba’s humanitarian crisis that is causing tens of thousands of Cubans to seek dangerous passage to the United States.

At the beginning of your term, you stated that Cuba’s designation on the SSOT list was under review.  Given that removal from the list requires an inquiry into any terrorism-sponsored activity and a guarantee that no future support will be given before p Rd re  roviding a rescission request to Congress, we request that your administration immediately complete that review and initiate proceedings to remove Cuba from the list. Such a move will advance legitimate U.S. security and humanitarian interests in a safer world, and help the future of the Cuban people. 

Sincerely,

Alliance for Cuba Engagement and Respect (ACERE)

AltruVistas

Americas Program 

Archwood UCC

Bay Area Cuba Saving Lives Committee

Boston Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom

Boston-Cuba Solidarity Coalition July 26th 

Building Relations with Cuban Labor

Casa Baltimore/Limay

Change SSF

Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America

COASAP

CODEPINK

Communist Party of Eastern Pa and Delaware

CUBAmistad

Democratic Socialists of America International Committee

Denver Peace Council

Doroteia Pathways Foundation

Eastside Solutionaries Collective

Florida International Solidarity Collective 

Franciscan Sisters

Global Health Partners

Jemez Peacemakers

Latin American Solidarity Coalition

Leftroots

Martinez Arts Consulting, ALC

Massachusetts Peace Action

Maui Peace Action

Mennonite Central Committee U.S.

Minnesota Cuba Committee

National Network on Cuba

New Haven Leon SCP

NJ State Industrial Union Council

Oklahoma-Cuba Friendship Committee

PazAmor, FORNORM 

Peace Action (WI)

Pittsburgh-Matanzas Sister Cities Partnership

PVFT

Race Matters, First Congregational UCC

Racial Justice Rising

Rockford Urban Ministries

San Juan County (WA) Democrats

Saving Lives Campaign 

Solidarity Committee on the Americas (Women Against Military Madness in Minnesota)

Solidarity Info Service

St. Paul Eastside Neighbors for Peace

Teatro de la Tierra

The Law Office of Jose Pertierra

Transeair Travel LLC

Transport Workers Union local 100(ret.)

TSUKI

US Women and Cuba Collaboration

Veterans For Peace Chapter 113 Hawaii

Witness For Peace Solidarity Collective

Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom US

Yoruba Trucking Ltd.



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