Marco Rubio and other Republican senators present a bill to “punish” countries that hire Cuban medical missions

Jun 22, 2020 by

Cubadebate – http://www.cubadebate.cu –

Marco Rubio and other Republican senators present a bill to “punish” countries that hire Cuban medical missions

June 18, 2020
News, Health No Comments

Return of the Cuban Medical Brigade from Italy.  Photo Ismael Francisco Cubadebate

Lenin Oriol, center, in the act of reception upon arrival in Cuba from Italy. Photo: Ismael Francisco / Cubadebate.

A group of Republican senators in the United States presented a bill on Wednesday to punish countries that hire Cuban medical missions by considering them complicit in human trafficking.

The goal of the senators – Rick Scott, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz , the latter two with Cuban parents – is to stop the income Cuba receives from its medical missions, which according to lawmakers is about 7,000 million dollars annually.

The bill, called “Stopping the Gains of the Cuban Regime,” urges the State Department to identify nations receiving medical missions as a factor to consider when writing the report on human trafficking around the world.

The legislators indicated that the host countries of Cuban doctors will be exempt from the sanctions as long as they directly deposit the salaries to the professionals, make the contracts public and do not make additional payments to Cuba for their work.

“These medical missions seem like gestures in good faith, but they are really used by Raúl Castro and Miguel Díaz-Canel to fill the chests that finance the oppression of the Cuban people. This bill will clarify who his international accomplices are, “said Senator Ted Cruz.

For his part, Rick Scott said that Cuba “now uses the coronavirus pandemic to obtain profits at the expense of these doctors” and considered that “any country that requests medical assistance from Cuba is supporting human trafficking”.

With the pandemic, Cuba has sent new medical missions to countries like Italy or Andorra, as well as many in Latin America and the Caribbean, such as Jamaica or Honduras.

Medical missions consist of sending health professionals to countries that request it from the Cuban Government.

These requests come in the event of a crisis, as with the pandemic , but it is common for them to be made by nations that require more doctors than they have, that want to reinforce specific medical specialties or that need to cover health care in remote or risky areas. local doctors don’t want to go.

There are currently some 28,000 Cuban doctors in 59 countries, of which 37 have cases of COVID-19. Over the years, more than 400,000 professionals have carried out missions in 164 countries in Africa, America, the Middle East and Asia.

(With information from EFE)

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