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Florida Rep. Reminds John Kerry that Obama Shook Raul Castro’s ‘Bloody Hand’

During a congressional hearing on Tuesday, Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) asked Secretary of State John Kerry pointedly about President Barack Obama’s reportedly spontaneous handshake with Cuban leader Raul Castro. She accused the Cuban dictator of possessing “bloody hands” used to brutally repress his people. Kerry, for his part, agreed that Cuba’s human rights record is problematic.

After asking questions about the proposed Iranian nuclear deal and Iraq, Ros-Lehtinen pivoted to Obama’s handshake with Castro.

“Mr. Secretary, sometimes a handshake is just a handshake, but when the leader of the free world shakes the bloody hand of a ruthless dictator like Raul Castro, it becomes a propaganda coup for the tyrant,” Ros-Lehtinen said. “Castro uses that hand to sign the orders to repress and jail democracy advocates.”

RELATED: President Obama Shakes Hands with Raul Castro at Nelson Mandela Memorial

“Could you please tell the Cuban people living under that repressive regime that, a handshake notwithstanding, the U.S. policy toward the cruel and sadistic Cuban dictatorship has not weakened?” she asked.

“Ladies and gentlemen, today is about honoring Nelson Mandela,” Kerry later responded. He added that Obama urged all of the world’s leaders to honor Mandela’s legacy by upholding “basic human rights.”

“And would you say Raul Castro is upholding basic human rights?” Ros-Lehtinen interjected.

“No,” Kerry replied. “Absolutely not.”

Watch the clip below via C-SPAN 3:

[Photo via screen grab ]

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