Motion for a resolution - B7-0176/2010Motion for a resolution

MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on Cuba – the case of Orlando Zapata Tamayo


to wind up the debate on statements by the Council and Commission
pursuant to Rule 110(2) of the Rules of Procedure

Charles Tannock, Edvard Kožušník, Jacek Olgierd Kurski, Ryszard Antoni Legutko, Tomasz Piotr Poręba, Adam Bielan, Ryszard Czarnecki on behalf of the ECR Group

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B7-0169/2010

Procedure : 2010/2592(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected :  
Texts tabled :
Texts adopted :


European Parliament resolution on Cuba – the case of Orlando Zapata Tamayo

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to its earlier resolutions on the situation in Cuba and, in particular, those of 17 November 2004[1], 2 February 2006[2], and 21 June 2007[3],

–   having regard to its resolutions on the Annual Reports on Human Rights in the World for 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008 and to the EU’s policy on the matter,

–   having regard to its resolution of 14 December 2006 on the follow-up to the Sakharov Prize[4],

–   having regard to the Council Presidency’s declaration of 14 December 2005 on Damas de Blanco and to its earlier declarations of 26 March 2003 and 5 June 2003 on the situation in Cuba,

–   having regard to Council Common Position 96/697/CFSP on Cuba[5], which was adopted on 2 December 1996 and has been periodically updated,

–   having regard to the conclusions of the General Affairs and External Relations Council of 18 June 2007 on Cuba,

–   having regard to the statement by the spokesperson for High Representative Catherine Ashton on the death in Cuba of Orlando Zapata Tamayo on 25 February 2010,

–   having regard to Rule 110(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A. whereas defending the universality and indivisibility of human rights, including civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, remains one of the European Union’s main objectives,

B.  whereas dozens of independent journalists, peaceful dissidents and defenders of human rights, who are members of the democratic opposition, are still being held in jail in Cuba and some of them are seriously ill,

C. whereas Parliament awarded the 2005 Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought to the Cuban collective Damas de Blanco; whereas the Cuban authorities’ refusal to allow Damas de Blanco to travel to the seat of Parliament to receive the award violates one of the basic human rights, namely the right freely to leave and return to one’s own country, as enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,

D. whereas Cuba needs to launch a process of political transition to multi-party democracy, with participation and decision-making open to all Cubans on the basis of an open-ended dialogue that excludes no one,

E.  whereas the death of Orlando Zapata Tamayo marks the first time in nearly 40 years that a Cuban activist has starved himself to death to protest against government abuses and the political regime in Cuba,

F.  whereas the death of Orlando Zapata Tamayo generated wide protest at international level against the Cuban authorities,

G. whereas there are about 200 political prisoners still held in Cuba,

1.  Firmly condemns the death of political prisoner Orlando Zapata Tamayo, who died 85 days after he began refusing food in protest at jail conditions;

2.  Deplores the absence of any significant signs of response by the Cuban authorities to the calls by the EU for full respect for fundamental freedoms, especially freedom of expression and freedom of political association;

3.  Deplores the Cuban Government’s failure to respond to the calls by Parliament and the Council for the immediate release of all political prisoners and prisoners of conscience, and insists that imprisoning Cuban dissidents for their ideals and their peaceful political activity is contrary to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights;

4.  Urges the Cuban Government to release, immediately and unconditionally, all political prisoners and to desist from such arbitrary arrests in the future;

5.  Calls on the Council and the Commission to go on insisting on the release of political dissidents in Cuba and to come up with concrete measures to safeguard the work of human rights activists;

6.  Calls on the Cuban authorities to make real the commitment to human rights that it has entered into by signing the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights;

7.  Calls on the Cuban Government to stop impeding the exercise of human rights and to remove all barriers to freedom of movement, expression, information and association and to party political involvement;

8.  Urges the EU institutions to express unconditional support for the initiation of a peaceful process of political transition towards a democratic political regime in Cuba;

9.  Invites the High Representative to initiate a structural dialogue with representatives of civil society and those supportive of political transformation in Cuba, in accordance with conclusions successively approved by the Council and making use of EU mechanisms for cooperation and development;

10. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the EUROLAT Assembly and the Cuban Government and National Assembly of People’s Power.