Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL) released the following statement:
"I commend the Panamanian government for graciously agreeing to provide asylum to nineteen Cuban refugees currently detained in The Bahamas. A few other governments, including our own, have also agreed to take some refugees. These individuals, who risked everything to escape totalitarianism, will finally be free to begin their lives anew.
Like so many in my community, I was outraged at the maltreatment and prolonged detainment of Cuban refugees in Bahamian custody. Reports indicate that approximately five refugees remain in The Bahamas and still need asylum. I will continue to demand that all refugees be treated humanely and in full accordance with international norms and obligations, and wish to thank the Panamanian government again for their generous and humane gesture."