Friday, December 7, 2012

UN Informs Cuba that Detention of Alan Gross Violates International Law

UN Informs Cuba that Detention of Alan Gross Violates International Law
December 5, 2012 8:49 pm 4 comments

Josefina Vidal, head of North American Affairs at the Cuban Foreign
Ministry, said in a press conference Wednesday that the United Nations
Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has informed Cuba that the
country's ongoing detention of Jewish-American contractor Alan Gross
violates international law, the Associated Press reported.

Dec. 3 marked the three-year anniversary of Gross's arrest. He was
sentenced to a 15-year prison term for helping Cuba's Jewish community
access the Internet.

The contents of the UN arbitrary detention group's ruling in favor of
Gross, despite Vidal's admission of defeat, have not yet been publicly
released by Cuba. Gross's attorney, Jared Genser, in a press release
called for Cuba to reveal the full UN judgment "so that the
international community can see what the United Nations has itself said."

Comprised of neutral experts from Chile, Norway, Pakistan, Senegal, and
Ukraine, the UN working group issues opinions that are not binding or
enforceable, but could still be significant, Genser told in October.

"Having an independent and impartial group in the United Nations saying
that he's been held in violation of international law provides a very
strong political and public relations tool to put pressure on the
government of Cuba to resolve the case," Genser said.

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