Regarding Alan Gross Sr.
By Jorge A. Bolaños Suárez
May 11, 2012
From the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Cuba
Ambassador Jorge A Bolaños´ Letter to CNN Anchor Wolf Blitzer
May 5, 2012
The Situation Room
CNN America, Inc.
820 First Street NE
Washington D.C. 20002-4243
Dear Mr. Blitzer:
In connection with your conversation with Mr. Alan Gross, broadcasted on May 4, 2012 in “The Situation Room”, I’m writing to request that my government’s positions on the case be equally made known. These are:
- The Cuban government has conveyed to the U.S. government Cuba’s willingness to find a humanitarian solution on a reciprocal basis in the case of Mr. Gross.
- Mr. Gross was not convicted for helping the Cuban Jewish community to connect to the Internet. All Cuban synagogues have Internet; they had Internet before Mr. Gross came to Cuba.
- Mr. Gross violated Cuban laws by implementing a U.S. government program aimed at attempting to undermine Cuba’s constitutional order. The undercover activities of Mr. Gross in Cuba constitute crimes in many countries, including in the United States.
- During his visits to Cuba, Mr. Gross never told the people he contacted that he was working for the U.S. government. He is not an activist who came to Cuba to assist the Cuban people; he is a professional paid for by the U.S. government.
• Mr. Alan Gross is in good physical conditions, he receives specialized medical care, balanced meals, regular consular access, visits by friends and political and religious personalities. He has had visits by his wife and he maintains systematic and stable communication with his family.
• The cases of Rene Gonzalez and Alan Gross are very different. Rene served his sentence to the last day, and he remains in the U.S. against his will, away from his family. The decision by a Florida federal judge to allow Rene to travel to Cuba is in line with the conditions imposed for Rene’s supervised release, which allow his traveling to Cuba, following authorization by the probation officer or the court. His wife Olga is not even allowed to visit him during his term of supervised release.
- The Cuban government has facilitated all visits by family members, friends, religious figures and political personalities that have requested access to Mr. Gross. These conditions are very different from the cruel regime of solitary confinement that has been arbitrarily meted out against the Cuban Five: Gerardo, Ramon, Antonio, Fernando and even Rene. They have strict restrictions against giving interviews to the U.S. press.
- The Five have been almost 14 years in U.S. prisons, for gathering information on terrorist groups conducting attacks against Cuba from the U.S. Such information helped save lives in both countries. The Five were not in the possession of government secrets nor did they attempt to undermine U.S. security.
- The Five have faced obstacles to contact with their families and two of them, Gerardo and Rene have not been visited by their wives, Adriana and Olga. Gerardo’s mother died while he was in prison, and the mothers and fathers of the other four are very old. Gerardo and his wife have not been able to conceive a child.
Jorge A. Bolaños Suárez
Chief of the Cuban Interests Section