President-elect Donald Trump strongly condemned the late Cuban dictator, Fidel Castro, hours after news of his death at age 90.
“The world marks the passing of a brutal dictator who oppressed his own people for nearly six decades,” read a statement issued by Trump after Castro’s passing. “Fidel Castro’s legacy is one of firing squads, theft, unimaginable suffering, poverty and the denial of fundamental human rights.”
President-elect Trump has vowed to walk back President Obama’s move to open diplomatic relations with Cuba. According to Trump, after decades of non-democratic rule through Fidel Castro and his brother Raul, the country remains a “totalitarian island” that Trump anticipates will move away from “the horrors endured for too long, and toward a future in which the wonderful Cuban people finally live in the freedom they so richly deserve.”
“Though the tragedies, deaths and pain caused by Fidel Castro cannot be erased, our administration will do all it can to ensure the Cuban people can finally begin their journey toward prosperity and liberty,” Trump’s statement continued as it highlighted hope for the future of the island nation.
Trump releases statement on death of Fidel Castro pic.twitter.com/BAYG2g1WIY
— Nick Corasaniti (@NYTnickc) November 26, 2016
Making no mention of Fidel Castro’s decades of dictatorial rule, imprisonment and execution of hundreds of thousands of political adversaries, and lack of any indigenous democratic institutions, President Barack Obama also issued a statement regarding the demise of the Cuban dictator and the state of US-Cuban relations, which was sharply criticized by former Florida governor Jeb Bush:
Failing to mention that millions have suffered because of Fidel Castro is a tragedy. https://t.co/SbhImMuqa5
— Jeb Bush (@JebBush) November 26, 2016
Republican leaders Senator Marco Rubio, House Speaker Paul Ryan, and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich also weighed in on social media to the news of Castro’s death:
Well into the 1970s, #FidelCasto was imprisoning gays and long-haired young people in work camps.
Read more here: https://t.co/7tTXe8KYtp
— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) November 26, 2016
— Senator Rubio Press (@SenRubioPress) November 26, 2016
Now that Fidel Castro is dead, the cruelty and oppression of his regime should die with him.
— Paul Ryan (@SpeakerRyan) November 26, 2016
The outpouring of praise for Fidel Castro is tragic.he was a relentless dictator who imprisoned thousands, killed and tortured many Cubans.
— Newt Gingrich (@newtgingrich) November 26, 2016
The Cuban Archive has documented at least 3,615 firing squad executions performed by the Castro regime from the time that Fidel Castro rose to dictatorial power on January 1, 1959.