Cuba likely to remain on State Sponsors of Terror list for refusing to cooperate in fight against terrorism

Because the communist Castro dictatorship continues to support terrorist groups and harbors fugitive terrorists, Cuba will likely remain on the State Sponsors of Terror list, according to the State Dept. However, no one can be sure or predict what the Biden administration, which is quite proficient at making the worst possible foreign policy decisions, will do in the future.

Nora Gamez Torres reports via the Hastings Tribune:

Cuba is not cooperating in fight against terrorism, Biden administration says

The U.S. State Department has told Congress that Cuba is not fully cooperating with the United States in combating terrorism, signaling that the Biden administration will keep the island on the list of states sponsors of terrorism.

The Federal Register published Tuesday an annual certification to Congress by Secretary of State Antony Blinken, informing lawmakers that Cuba, North Korea, Iran, Syria and Venezuela are not “fully cooperating with United States anti-terrorism efforts.” Of those countries, only Venezuela is not designated as a state sponsoring terrorism.

In March, Blinken told Florida Republican U.S. Rep. Maria Elvira Salazar that the administration was “not planning to remove” Cuba from the list of states that sponsor terrorism because the country did not meet the necessary conditions for such action.

“If there is to be such a review, it will be based on the law and based on the criteria in the law established by Congress,” Blinken said during a House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing.

Under the Biden administration, the U.S. and Cuba resumed regular talks to discuss law enforcement cooperation, including on anti-terrorism.

Cuba was added back to the list of terrorism sponsors during the last days of the Trump administration in January 2021 as the culmination of its “maximum pressure” campaign against the communist government. At the time, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo cited Cuba’s refusal to extradite members of the National Liberation Army, a Colombian terrorist group, that were in the country after a breakdown in peace talks with the Colombian government. Since then, the new government of Gustavo Petro in Colombia withdrew the extradition request and called for delisting Cuba from the terrorism-sponsor list.

Pompeo also mentioned that the Cuban government is harboring several fugitives from U.S. justice, including Joanne Chesimard, also known as Assata Shakur, a fugitive on the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorists List, who was convicted of murdering a New Jersey state trooper.

In February, the State Department released the 2021 country report on terrorism, which listed other fugitives wanted by the U.S. Justice Department who are and reportedly living in Cuba.

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