Bishop Cantú Urges Congress to Support Legislation Opening United States to Cuba, Urges Opposition to Obstruction

WASHINGTON—Congress should oppose appropriations riders that would reverse the opening of diplomatic relations and new trade and travel regulations regarding Cuba, said the chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on International Justice and Peace in letters to the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, June 22. Bishop Oscar Cantú of Las Cruces, New Mexico, also urged support for the “The Freedom to Export to Cuba Act of 2015” (S. 491) and “The Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act of 2015” (S. 299).

“Our Conference has long spoken out against the negative effects of the U.S. trade and travel embargo of Cuba. We hold that the way to encourage religious freedom and human rights in Cuba is through dialogue and reconciliation between the United States and Cuba, and within Cuban society. To accomplish this, the trade and travel embargo must be lifted,” wrote Bishop Cantú. “These bills are consistent with recent positive developments, including the removal of Cuba’s designation as a state sponsor of terrorism, and progress in establishing full diplomatic relations, including opening embassies.”

June 22, 2015