03/20/13 - LOCAL 10.com - US Senator Marco Rubio meets with Cuban blogger
WASHINGTON - U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio met with Cuban blogger Yoani Sanchez,
who is visiting Washington, D.C. as part of her tour of the U.S. and other
nations to talk about life in Cuba.
Sanchez and fellow blogger Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo met Wednesday with Rubio
and Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez.
During the meeting, they discussed expanding internet access in Cuba,
recently announced changes in Cuban travel and property policies, the
future of Cuba's government, foreign tourism to Cuba, the U.S. embargo, the
Helms-Burton law, the Cuban Adjustment Act and what her life in Cuba is
like, according to Rubio's office.
Sanchez has her own blog, "Generation Y," and sends daily tweets about the
life on the island and news regarding dissidents.
Rubio issued the following statement after the meeting: "Yoani is a
remarkable woman and I was honored to meet with her to get her perspective
on a broad range of issues regarding Cuba's people and their future.
Through her GeneraciÃ³n Y blog, Yoani has given the rest of the world
valuable insights into daily life in Cuba and, more importantly, given us a
glimpse of what brave, Cuban democracy advocates like her can do with a
little bit of Internet access. I believe expanding Internet access to Cuba
is an important foreign policy goal we should work towards, so that many
more can follow Yoani's lead and help expose the reality of the regime's
inept and repressive nature.
Yoani's tour is a testament to her relentless drive in all she does, having
been denied this chance by the regime so many times but keeping at it until
she was finally allowed to travel. Her trip is invaluable in helping
others better understand Cuba from the perspective of people like her who
long to be free.
It is critically important that, when it's time for her to return home, we
remain vigilant about the abuse and acts of vengeance the regime is surely
contemplating against her. The Castro regime is full of thugs and
murderers, and we must join other nations in continuing to demand the
safety and human rights not only of Yoani but of all the Cuban people."
Sanchez met with U.S. Rep. Joe Garcia, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Mario
Diaz-Balart, Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Sen. Bill Nelson on Tuesday.
Sanchez is expected to speak at the Freedom Tower on April 1 before her
return to Cuba.
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