Monday, February 22, 2010

7 Cuban Doctors Sue Cuba and Venezuela: Operation "Barrio Adentro" Exposed

"El que la hace la paga?"

The United States District for the Southern District of Florida is no stranger to international disputes. And certainly not to lawsuits filed against the Cuban regime or its officials.

Seven Cuban doctors and a nurse have filed a suit in Miami's federal court alleging that Cuba, Venezuela and its state-run oil company Petróleos de Venezuela engage in "modern slavery." The victims claim that they were forced to serve in the program "Misión Barrio Adentro" in order to help re-pay Cuba's debt to Venezuela.

In 2008, a federal judge granted an $80 million judgment against a company based in Curacao for submitting three Cuban workers to forced labor and holding them in inhumane conditions. This case set a precedent because it was the first time that a company was held responsible for engaging in slave labor and other human rights violations with the Cuban regime. However, like many cases before it, the plaintiffs have had enormous difficulty collecting the award.

An all too familiar sound of "Quien es el ultimo?!" comes to mind as "la cola" to collect against those who violate human rights grows year after year.

So I ask you, our fellow readers: What do you propose is an effective means of collecting these awards?

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