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Washington, D.C. – House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) released the following statement on the President’s change of policy toward Cuba:

“I am concerned that today’s announcement of a significant shift in U.S. policy towards Cuba is another indication of the Obama Administration’s policy of accommodation towards determined adversaries.  This policy shift will be seen as rewarding Havana despite the Cuban regime’s continuation of decades-long policies of repression, human rights abuses, and aggression. The regime continues to detain and harass political dissidents and cooperates with the worst rogue states on the planet, including North Korea, Syria, and Iran.  As with the President’s early engagement with the oppressive and violent regimes in Syria and Iran and his ‘reset’ with Vladimir Putin’s Russia, it is difficult to have much confidence that this new policy will result in a better life and more political freedoms for the people of Cuba.  More likely it will suggest to adversaries and allies alike that the United States lacks resolve in standing up for its interests and its principles.

“I welcome the release of U.S. citizen Alan Gross, who was unjustly detained by the regime in Havana. However, the concurrent release of three convicted Cuban spies risks emboldening others who would seek to take American hostages as leverage against America. While we rejoice in Alan Gross’s overdue return to America, we keep the many prisoners of conscience who continue to languish in Cuban jails in our thoughts and prayers.”