Josefina Vidal Ferreir of the North American Department of the Republic of Cuba foreign affairs division. She has responded to false allegation made by US imperialism involving her socialist country., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Havana. December 6, 2012
Press statement from Josefina Vial Ferreiro, U.S. director at the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs
THE last few days have seen an intensification of statements and false reports from the U.S. government related to the case of U.S. citizen Alan Gross, particularly related to the alleged deterioration of his health.
Once again, the U.S. government is lying to the public, by affirming that Mr. Gross is suffering from cancer and is not receiving adequate medical attention.
These lies have not stopped, not even after his family and U.S. authorities were given the results of the biopsy of a lesion on Mr. Gross’ back, which leave no doubt that he does not have cancer.
From the very first day, a team of Cuban doctors of international repute have systematically attended to Mr. Gross. This team has the results of a biopsy and other examinations which demonstrate that Mr. Gross is not suffering from cancer or any other illness representing a threat to his life. The U.S. has no evidence to demonstrate the contrary. If these distortions persist, we shall be obliged to divulge further evidence.
The U.S. government is also lying about Mr. Gross’ prison conditions, his schedule of telephone calls and visits.
The U.S. government is continuing to lie as to the causes which led to Mr. Gross’ detention, with the sole purpose of evading his direct responsibility for his situation and that of his family.
The U.S. government has never addressed the case of Alan Gross seriously and has only reiterated the unsustainable position that it has nothing to negotiate with Cuba in order to find a solution. At the same time, it insists on demanding from Cuba a unilateral decision which does not consider our humanitarian concerns related to the case of the Five. This is not realistic. I reiterate today Cuba’s disposition to immediately establish a dialogue on the issue of Gross.
On the basis of these fabrications and curiously coinciding with the anniversary of Mr. Gross’ detention, the U.S. government has pressured the UN Human Rights Council Working Group on Arbitrary Detention to force a decision declaring Mr. Gross’ detention arbitrary. Today, we denounce these acts of pressure, which led to a violation of the customary procedures and timing of the Group’s work.
Yesterday, December 4, the government of Cuba received the opinion of this group describing Alan Gross’ detention as arbitrary.
Today, we are circulating via the MINREX website Cuba’s response to the United Nations Group, which demonstrates that the detention of Mr. Gross cannot in any way be described as arbitrary.
Alan Gross was detained, tried and sentenced with all guarantees and rights of due legal process and in fulfillment of principles related to judicial independence. Mr. Gross violated Cuban laws by committing acts that constitute serious crimes, acts which are severely punished in most countries, including the U.S.
The United States does not permit any other government to ignore its regulations and clandestinely send individuals to its territory, with government funding from this other government, to establish illegal and covert communications systems, without undertaking any kind of procedure or registration, far less so when the objective is to destabilize the existing order.
Mr. Gross has received decorous and humane treatment since he was arrested.
The United Working Group is the same body which, in May 2005, declared arbitrary the detention of the five Cuban anti-terrorists, taking into consideration that they were held in solitary confinement for 17 months, did not have due access to lawyers and the evidence related to the case, as well as the existing climate of predisposition and prejudice which contributed to the Five being presented as guilty from the outset, given the absence of objectivity and impartiality.
The government of Cuba once again invites the U.S. government to serious talks on these issues in order to achieve a humanitarian solution acceptable to both sides.
International Press Center
Havana, December 5, 2012.