International Human Rights Day

Today, December 10th, is International Human Rights Day, a day to remember all those who are living under tyranny and oppression. All over the world today, there are billions of people who are currently living as slaves and victims of totalitarian regimes, deprived of their rights and freedom.

For Cubans, both on the island and in exile, it is a day to remind the world how they have been denied their human rights for more than six decades by the communist Castro dictatorship. For the most part, the international community has chosen to look the other way and any attention paid to the human rights violations taking place in Cuba is rare and short-lived.

Nevertheless, we are pleased to see the White House took this occasion to call attention to the hundreds (if not thousands) of political prisoners rotting in Cuba’s gulags:

As we look forward to honoring Human Rights Day this Saturday, December 10th, I once again call for the release of the hundreds of political prisoners in Cuba who remain in detention following the July 11, 2021 protests. In the face of oppression, these protestors bravely exercised their fundamental freedoms, including the rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly. The United States stands with the Cuban people as they stand up for their human rights and a say in the future of Cuba. We will continue to advocate for the release of all who were imprisoned in this brutal crackdown, and continue holding accountable Cuban officials responsible for violence against peaceful protests.

Throughout its decades in power, Cuba’s communist regime has ignored the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights and International Human Rights Day. For the Castro family dictatorship. December 10th is just another day to oppress and subjugate the Cuban people.

There was a time, however, when Cuba was a forerunner in international human rights. But today, it is one of the world’s most violent and prolific violators (via Notes from the Cuban Exile Quarter):

Over the past 20 years, I witnessed how Cuban diplomats undermined international human rights standards, first at the United Nations Human Rights Commission and later at the UN Human Rights Council.


Artists were arrested in Cuba in 2018 for protesting Decree 349, a law that eliminated the few artistic freedoms remaining there.

Prisoner of conscience Eduardo Cardet spent two years and 10 months in prison for speaking critically of Castro’s legacy. The sentence ended on September 30, 2019.

There are over a thousand political prisoners in Cuba today.

You can read Notes from the Cuban Exile Quarter’s entire post on Cuba’s pre-Castro human rights legacy HERE.