Lawyers bid to let Cubans stay in U.S.

October 27, 1994

MIAMI -- The more than 30,000 refugees who fled Cuba shouldn't be returned to their country before they can meet with lawyers, attorneys argued yesterday.

But lawyers representing the U.S. government said the refugees held at military bases at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and in Panama have no right to an attorney, and for that matter no rights at all under U.S. laws.

The arguments came at a hearing before U.S. District Judge C. Clyde Atkins, who issued a temporary restraining order Tuesday blocking the return of 23 Cubans who want to go back to their homeland.

Yesterday's hearing was on a request to extend Judge Atkins' order to all the Cubans detained in Panama and Guantanamo.

Judge Atkins heard more than three hours of arguments but took no immediate action.

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