U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the Middle East and North Africa Subcommittee, made the following statement regarding the reports on the UN Report on Cuba and the North Korea-bound ship that carried military equipment and was apprehended in Panama. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
"These findings reaffirm the dangerous nexus between Cuba and other rogue regimes worldwide and remind us why Cuba is designated as a State Sponsor of Terrorism. And while some in the U.S. turn a blind eye to the continuing human rights abuses in the island and waste their time on politically-motivated and biased polls, the Castro brothers continue collaborating with enemies of the U.S. like North Korea to undermine our national security at every turn.
"It's absurd to even consider normalizing relations with Cuba while this criminal regime makes a mockery of international norms and universal human rights standards. I urge the Obama administration and the United Nations to not ignore this violation and penalize the Cuban regime for this unlawful action."
NOTE: According to press reports about the UN report, the panel determined that there was a "comprehensive planned strategy to conceal the existence and nature of the cargo" and there was a "concealment and disguise" of the automatic identification system since it was turned off to deceive the ship's location.