Note: This blog's templates will be updated this afternoon to a responsive design bringing it in line with

At that time, we will also change to the Facebook commenting system. You will need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment.

« Look who's Squawking: Gov. Rick Scott co-hosts CNBC morning show | Main | Mayor Gimenez and his Rosh Hashanah prayer »

Florida Republicans to ask for the release of Cuban political prisoners

South Florida Republican U.S. Reps. Mario Diaz-Balart, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and David Rivera will ask today for the unconditional release of several political prisoners held in Cuba. They'll hold a press conference this afternoon at Diaz-Balart's office in Doral.

They include Yris Tamara Perez Aguilar, the wife of Jorge Luis ‘Antunez’ Garica Perez, Donaida Perez Paseiro and Yaimara Reyes Mesa.

The activists and others were brutally beaten and detained this week while visiting Cuba’s main State Security office to demand information regarding the welfare of other political prisoners, Diaz-Balart's office said. Accounts provided by witnesses to the attack indicate that the injuries caused by the beatings were severe. Their extent of their injuries and their whereabouts, remain unknown, his office said.

President Barack Obama on Wednesday said that his administration has tried to send a signal "that we are open to a new relationship with Cuba." But that's only if the Cuban government "starts taking the proper steps to open up its own country and provide the space and the respect for human rights that would allow the Cuban people to determine their own destiny," Obama said.