HAVANA TIMES — Jesse Jackson completed his four-day visit to Cuba on Monday. While he did meet with representatives of the FARC guerrillas in Havana for peace talks with the Colombian government, he was unable to see US agent Alan Gross, who is in his fourth year of a 15-year sentence for endangering Cuban national security.
“I certainly inquired about him. No American can come here in good conscience and not ask about him,” Jackson said. “I would hope we would maintain our vigil in trying to gain his release,” AP quoted the reverend as saying.
Jackson did meet with the FARC emissaries who asked that he be involved in the handing over of former US soldier Kevin Scott Sutay, taken prisoner in the Colombian jungle.
However, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said that only the Red Cross would be allowed to obtain Sutay’s release, saying there would be “no media spectacle” referring to the involvement of Jackson.
Jackson told AP he still plans to travel to Colombia in the next days and try to work out an agreement to get Sutay out.
“The American is free, but he cannot be retrieved, so he indeed is not free,” Jackson said. “He’s no longer being held by FARC. He’s being held by a lack of access.”