U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the Middle East and North Africa Subcommittee, made the following statement on the status of the asylum petitions filed by Cuban nationals in Colombia. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
"My office has been informed that the six Cuban nationals in Colombia have filed their asylum petitions today. We must recognize their desire to live where they can freely pursue opportunities and live without fearing a brutal police state like those currently living under the Castro tyranny. I urge the Government of Colombia to give prompt and fair consideration to their petitions so that these individuals don't have to continue in a state of uncertainty, fearing the possibility of being returned to the oppressed island which they left. I also commend the Colombian office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees for everything they are doing to help the process along and ensure the asylum seekers' well being."