The US State Department has designated Cuba as a State Sponsor of Terrorism for repeatedly providing support for acts of international terrorism in granting safe harbor to terrorists.
The statement released by the US state department added that the Trump Administration has been focused from the start on denying the Castro regime the resources it uses to oppress its people at home, and countering its malign interference in Venezuela and the rest of the Western Hemisphere.
“With this action, we will once again hold Cuba’s government accountable and send a clear message: the Castro regime must end its support for international terrorism and subversion of U.S. justice,” the statement added.
The designation has been made on the grounds that Cuba continues to harbor American fugitives and refuses a Colombian extradition request for National Liberation Army members linked to a 2019 bombing, along with the Cuban’s intelligence and security apparatus infiltration of Venezuela’s security and military forces, assisting Nicholas Maduro to maintain his stranglehold over his people while allowing terrorist organizations to operate.
According to the statement, the Cuban government has fed, housed, and provided medical care for murderers, bombmakers, and hijackers, while many Cubans go hungry, homeless, and without basic medicine. Members of the National Liberation Army (ELN), a US-designated Foreign Terrorist Organization, traveled to Havana to conduct peace talks with the Colombian government in 2017.
“Cuba has refused Colombia’s requests to extradite ten ELN leaders living in Havana after the group claimed responsibility for the January 2019 bombing of a Bogota police academy that killed 22 people and injured more than 87 others,” the statement added.
Cuba also harbors several US fugitives from justice wanted on or convicted of charges of political violence, many of whom have resided in Cuba for decades.
The statement added that Cuba has been returned to the list following its broken commitment to stop supporting terrorism as a condition of its removal by the previous administration in 2015.