Oct 30, -- The United States does not learn its lesson. For the twenty-second time the international community at the UN has spoken out against the inhuman and illegal economic, commercial and financial blockade the US government has maintained against the Cuban people for more than half a century.
188 of the 193 UN member nations voted for an end to the policy that has caused the Cuban people losses of more than a trillion dollars, deeply affecting health and education sectors on the Island.
The White House was forced to settle for the support of Israel alone. The small island of Palau that supported it last year, abstained this time around.
Blocs such as the Group of 77 plus China, the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, the Non-Aligned Movement, the Caribbean Community, the African Group and the Islamic Organization had clearly expressed their position to the international community before the vote, supporting the Cuban claim that the US blockade qualifies as an act of genocide.
Latin America, then, Asia and Africa have demanded the end of the U.S. blockade against Cuba, emphasizing that this small nation has extended solidarity help other peoples in areas such as health and literacy.
Bruno Rodriguez, Cuban Foreign Minister, asked in his speech why the United States remains stuck to an outdated policy, ethically unacceptable, and does not hearken to world opinion, especially the opinion of American citizens who support the normalization of relations between the two nations.
The result of the vote was as expected. In the debate at the UN General Assembly, held between September 24th and October 1st, the issue of U.S. siege and its rejection was among the most often discussed by presidents, heads of state and foreign ministers.
Nearly fifty leaders referred to the blockade and the need for it to be lifted. Many delegates described it as genocide. All see it as illegal, unfair and as a relic of the Cold War. Many countries and UN-specialized agencies have written to the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon, with these views.
At the international level, the number of countries that reject the U.S. policy of hostility has been increasing since 1992. They see that the blockade affects not only Cubans, but also the citizens of both the United States and of other countries. There is widespread recognition that the blockade is the unilateral application in peacetime of a war measures act.
In the eyes of all the world it is time to end the US blockade. It violates international law, threatens peace, and the security of a sovereign state that is an equal and full founder-member the United Nations itself.
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- RHC's Regular Program DXERS UNLIMITED, with Professor Arnaldo 'Arnie' Coro
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