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Sen. Cruz Leads Colleagues in Bipartisan Legislation Highlighting Cuban Regime Human Rights Violations, Honoring Dissident Oswaldo Payá

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today introduced legislation with Sens. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), and Rick Scott (R-Fla.) to rename the street outside the Cuban Embassy in Washington D.C. "Oswaldo Payá Way," to call out the oppression of the Cuban regime and highlight the cause of dissident Oswaldo Payá.

Sen. Cruz previously introduced this resolution in July 2020. Sen. Cruz has worked closely with Payá's daughter Rosa Maria, and in November of 2019, met with her on National Victims of Communism Day to call for freedom and democracy to be restored to Cuba. Sen. Cruz also joined a bipartisan resolution, which passed the Senate in April of 2018, honoring the legacy of Oswaldo Payá and calling for an impartial investigation into the circumstances surrounding his death.

Upon introduction, Sen. Cruz said:

"Today, I had the honor to meet again with Oswaldo Payá's daughter, Rosa Maria Payá, who continues her father's legacy by denouncing the evils of communism and fighting for the people of Cuba. As an outspoken dissident, Oswaldo Payá courageously fought for freedom and democracy in the face of the Castro regime's brutal human rights abuses. The regime desperately wants the world to forget Oswaldo Payá. That is why I am proud to introduce this bipartisan bill once again to rename the street outside the Cuban embassy after Payá and send a powerful message to the Cuban regime that we stand with freedom fighters who work to liberate the people of Cuba as they stand up to ruthless oppression."

Rosa Maria Payá said:

"Oswaldo Payá Way will be a constant reminder of the urgency to stop the impunity of the regime. My father's legacy is alive in the fight for freedom and rights of the Cuban people."

Sen. Durbin said:

"Oswaldo Payá was a courageous voice for justice and democracy in Cuba, and his death was a tragic blow to the dissident movement on the island. I have long called for a transparent and independent investigation into his suspicious death. I continue to stand with the Payá family and the people of Cuba in demanding peaceful democratic reform and the release of all political prisoners."

Sen. Rubio said:

"The life and legacy of the leader of Cuba's Christian Liberation Movement, Oswaldo Payá, has left an everlasting mark on the lives of many Cubans. His tireless advocacy in defense of Cuba's democratic future, one in which the island is truly free from the evils of tyranny, was not in vain. I'm proud to join my Senate colleagues in reintroducing this legislation to honor the work of one of Cuba's most important civil society leaders."

Sen. Cardin said:

"The name of Oswaldo Paya, who died while peacefully working to promote constitutional democracy in Cuba, will never be forgotten in Cuba. This measure would ensure that Americans also would be reminded of Paya's courage and the sacrifice he made for the people of Cuba."

Sen. Scott added:

"I'm honored to join my colleagues to commemorate the 8th Anniversary of the tragic assassination of Oswaldo Payá - a hero who dedicated his life to fighting for freedom and democracy in Cuba. Payá's legacy lives on through the unrelenting strength of his daughter, Rosa Maria Payá, and all those courageously working to liberate Cuba from Castro-Communism. We will not forget the crimes and human rights violations of the Castro regime against its people - crimes that continue today. The United States will always remain on the side of freedom and democracy and we will not stop working for a new day of freedom in Cuba."

Read the full text of the resolution here.