Cuban Democracy Leader Disappears From Commercial Flight

Thursday, September 8, 2016
UPDATE: Avila Leon was finally able to make contact on Thursday afternoon -- nearly 24 hours after AA flights #1359 arrived in Cuba. Upon arriving, she learned her home had been confiscated by the Castro regime and her life was threatened.

Yesterday, Cuban democracy leader Sirley Avila Leon boarded American Airlines flight #1359 from Miami to Holguin.

This was the much-hyped second commercial flight to Cuba -- after last week's JetBlue flight -- pursuant to Obama's new policy.

AA flight #1359 arrived in Holguin at 4:13 P.M.

Yet, Avila Leon has not been heard from since she boarded the plane in Miami.

She had been in the United States for nearly six months receiving medical treatment.

Those who do not know Avila Leon's story should click here.

In short, she was former National Assembly member-turned-dissident. As a result, Avila Leon suffered a machete attack by Castro regime operatives, which severed her left hand and left her with life-threatening injuries.

During her stay in the United States, Avila Leon testified before the United States Congress, where she denounced the increased crimes and abuses of the Cuban dictatorship.

It's presumed that Avila Leon has been arrested upon her arrival in Cuba.

However, it's difficult to gather any information -- for as Senators Rubio and Menendez, and Transportation Security Subcommittee Chairman John Katko warned yesterday -- all airport employees (including those of American Airlines) in Cuba are agents and employees of the Castro regime.

In other words, there is no independent personnel in Cuba's airports. This lack of transparency should be a concern to all of us -- not least of which for U.S. security.

Thus, the tragic conundrum that Avila Leon and others like her now face. And the complicity of American Airlines and those that agree to Castro's conditions for business.