“It is my sincere hope that all political prisoners who remain jailed, including three of today’s award recipients, will be unconditionally released”.---President Barack Obama called on the Cuban government to open the doors to democracy by freeing all of the country’s political prisoners.
Obama’s remarks came as the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) awarded five Cuban dissidents its annual Democracy Award. None of the recipients traveled to Washington to receive their prize since three of them were behind bars while the other two were arrested for trying to organize a protest.
Despite a recent thawing in relations between Cuba and the U.S., one of the awarded dissidents criticized Obama for his “sterile approach” towards the Castro regime.
Online Sources- Miami Herald, Bloomberg, The Latin Americanist, AP