Mr. Rex Tillerson references the Republic of Cuba in his remarks to the United States Senate Foreign Relations Committee...
United States Secretary of State Designate Rex Tillerson
Senate Confirmation Hearing Opening Statement
11 January 2017
I am honored to have the backing of Senator Cornyn and Senator Cruz from my home state of Texas. I also want to thank Senator Nunn for his commitment to nuclear non-proliferation, and Secretary Gates for his service to eight presidents and his own leadership as President of the Boy Scouts of America.
Chairman Corker, Ranking Member Cardin, and Members of the Committee, it is an honor to appear before you today as President-elect Trump’s nominee for Secretary of State and to seek the approval of this Committee and the full Senate for my confirmation.
But our leadership demands action specifically focused on improving the conditions of people the world over, utilizing both aid and economic sanctions as instruments of foreign policy when appropriate.
And we must adhere to standards of accountability. Our recent engagement with the government of Cuba was not accompanied by any significant concessions on human rights. We have not held them accountable for their conduct. Their leaders received much, while their people received little. That serves neither the interest of Cubans or Americans.
Abraham Lincoln declared that America is “the last best hope of Earth.” Our moral light must not go out if we are to remain an agent of freedom.