Cuba: Estaban Lazo Hernandez Travels to Kenya for Clarification on 2 Kidnapped Doctors

February 20, 2024

kidnapped Cuban doctors, Dr. Assel Herrera Correa y Dr. Landy Rodríguez Hernández,

Esteban Lazo Hernández, president of the Cuban National Assembly and its Council of State, has traveled to the Republic of Kenya as a High Level Special Envoy, to carry out urgent negotiations with the highest authorities of that country in the search for cooperation and clarification, in light of the recent news published about the possible unconfirmed death of doctors Assel Herrera Correa and Landy Rodríguez Hernández, kidnapped in that country on April 12, 2019.

Since the first hours of receiving the news, the government of Cuba has given absolute priority to the efforts that, by various means and on the part of different international actors, are being carried out in order to obtain the most objective information regarding the facts, until all possibilities are exhausted to confirm the situation of our compatriots.

In this context, since Sunday, February 18, and in addition to the negotiations and communication with the Kenyan government, official contacts have been initiated with the Somali government in search of accuracy on the reported military operations.

According to various media citing the United States African Command (Africom), the event occurred on the night of February 15, 2024, during a drone bombing by the U.S. military in the town of Dilib, Somalia, where the hostages were being held. This information was ratified on February 19 by an Africom spokeswoman, CNN reported.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs approached the U.S. government through diplomatic channels on Sunday, February 18, seeking clarification and is still awaiting a response.

So far, there has been no public statement from the U.S. government or its forces to confirm the news regarding the kidnapped Cuban doctors or to deny what has been reported. There is no knowledge of the circumstances and characteristics of the military operation that the Africom spokeswoman confirms occurred, whether it was justified, and whether it was carried out with the obligatory care to avoid collateral damage, protect civilians and innocents, and with due respect for international humanitarian law.

This is an issue about which international organizations have expressed serious concern in the past.

Source: Minrex, unofficial translation by Resumen Latinoamericano – English