UNITED NATIONS – The Cuban president Raúl Castro’s first participation in the United Nations constituted the ratification of clear positions and arguments of his country in matters of international development and politics, and the occasion for his second interview with the president of the United States, Barack Obama.
The presence of the Cuban governor, alongside the intervention of the Pope Francis before the plenary session of the Assembly, became one of the main focal points of attention in the World Headquarters, where during almost one week various meetings of the heads of state and of the government were held.
The main lights of all of the meetings were directed at the meeting held between Raúl Castro and the president of the United States, Barack Obama, the second meeting this year between the two of them and the first after the reestablishment of the diplomatic relations between Havana and Washington last July 30.
Some time before, the Cuban dignitary attended a reception offered by the White House in a hotel in New York, his presence marked by one of his photographers and Obama and his wife Michelle.
During the conversation in the UN Headquartes, the Cuban head of state reiterated his will to work towards a new type of relations between the two countries but ratified that in order for the links to be normalized, the embargo against Cuba imposed more than half a century ago must be lifted.
He recalled that this barrier causes damage and hardship to the people of Cuba, as well as affecting the interests of the North American citizens.
Other detrimental issues for the Cuban sovereignty should be resolved too he said.
In the meeting, matters involving the cooperation in areas of mutual profit and in third party countries such as the case in Haiti were discussed, as well as the dialogue concerning bilateral and multilateral interest, and the solution to pending problems between the two nations.
The issue of the US embargo against Cuba was present in Raúl Castro’s speeches in the Summit regarding Sustainable Development, a high level meeting about the empowerment of women and the General debate of the highest authorities of the UN.
In the first meeting, he called for the adoption of tangible agreements that will help development and find a solution to the problem of ‘the debt already paid multiple times’ and he assured that the instability in numerous regions holds its roots in the situation of sub development in which two thirds of the world population live.
In similar terms it was said in the meeting that in order to confirm putting an end to the abuse against women, the eradication of poverty and hunger must be materialized as well as stopping conflicts, prioritizing human beings above capital and preserving the environment.
The most allencompassing speech that the Cuban president gave was presented in the General Debate of the General Assembly where he addressed the main international problems, and he ratified Cuba’s solid position in this aspect, urging to defend the UN from unilateralism and forming a profound reform to democratize it and bring it closer to the people.
Raúl Castro gave his opinion in front of the leaders of the 193 member states of the UN: “It is in poverty and inequality where the causes of the conflicts should be found, generated firstly by colonialism and the dispossession of the autonomous populations, and then later by imperialism and the distribution of spheres of influence”.
He also reiterated that in order for full normalization of the relations between Cuba and the United States to take place it is necessary for the embargo to be lifted.
Not long beforehand, Obama had expressed his trust in the Congress of his country “(which will) inevitably lift an embargo that should not be in place.”
The activity of the Cuban mandatory at the UN included meetings and interviews with the president of Russia, Vladimir Putin; Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro; France, François Hollande; Belarús, Alexander Lukashenko; and Mozambique, Filipe Nyusi, and finally with the first Prime Minister of Sweden, Stefan Löfven.
Furthermore, he was received by the general secretary of the UN, Ban Ki-moon, and he headed the ceremonies of the establishment of diplomatic relations with Palau and Islas Marshall. Moreover, he spoke with the New York governor, Andrew Cuomo, and other North American personalities such as the expresident Bill Clinton, the delegates Patrick Leahy, Barbara Lee, James McGovern, Charles Rangel and José Serrano, as well as a group of business men and solidarity activists.Share on FB Share on TT