Quote of the Day: On Confiscated Properties in Cuba

Wednesday, June 17, 2015
I continue to strongly oppose the Obama Administration’s decision to normalize relations with the oppressive Communist Castro regime.  The President’s determination to continue to negotiate from a position of weakness and not to be more forceful in insisting upon basic freedoms and human rights for the Cuban people is a profound disservice to those brave individuals on the island who continue to be bold enough to stand up to the regime.  Earlier this year, this Subcommittee examined the U.S. national security implications of the President’s new Cuba policy shift. This hearing will examine the Cuban government’s complete disregard for property rights, which has impacted thousands of American and Cuban citizens alike.  When Fidel Castro brutally seized power in 1959, he confiscated property from both U.S. and Cuban titleholders – some at gunpoint – without providing any compensation in return. Yet, the Obama Administration has proceeded with talks toward normalization of relations with Cuba without prioritizing justice for U.S. claimants whose property and assets were stolen from them. In total, these property claims represent the loss of billions of dollars and a blatant disregard for the importance of property rights and the rule of law. I look forward to examining this issue in greater detail.
-- U.S. Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC), Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee's Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere, on today's hearing on confiscated properties in Cuba, 6/18/15