Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
October 10, 2003
"In all that lies ahead, the Cuban people will have a constant
friend in the United States of America. No tyrant can stand forever
against the power of liberty - because the hope of freedom is found in
President George W. Bush, October 10, 2003
Today the President announced three initiatives intended to assist
the Cuban people in their struggle for freedom and to prepare the U.S.
government for the emergence of a free and democratic Cuba.
The President also underscored his commitment to breaking the
information blockade imposed on the Cuban people by the regime. He
noted recent developments, such as satellite transmissions, that are
helping to bring more broadcasts to more Cuban households.
Commission for Assistance to a Free Cuba
- Commission is co-chaired by Secretaries Powell and Martinez
and comprised of U.S. executive branch agency representatives.
- Commission will help prepare the U.S. government to provide
effective assistance to a free Cuba.
- The Commission will consider the elements of a
comprehensive program to assist the Cuban people to establish democracy
and the rule of law, create the core institutions of free enterprise,
modernize infrastructure, and provide health, housing, and human
Greater Enforcement of Travel Restrictions
- Greater enforcement of travel restrictions will make more
certain that permitted travel for Americans (like family visits,
humanitarian aid, research) is not abused and used as cover for illegal
business travel, to skirt restrictions on carrying cash into Cuba, or
- Violations of restrictions serve only to funnel funds to
the dictator and his repressive regime.
- Enforcement agencies will increase inspections of travelers
and shipments to and from Cuba and target those who illegally travel to
Cuba via third countries or on private vessels.
- Improving our ability to identify and protect those who
face persecution in Cuba and provide them the opportunity to come to
the United States safely.
- Goal is to see that no Cuban finds it necessary to risk his
or her life on the high seas to come to the United States.
- Will increase the number of new migrants admitted from Cuba
through a safe, legal, and orderly process.
- Will undertake a public diplomacy campaign in the U.S. and
Cuba to better inform Cubans about safe and legal migration options.
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