Statement by H.E. Mr. Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cuba, at the ZGeneral Debate of the United Nations General Assembly High-Level Segment. New York, 21 September, 2022
Author: Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla | firstname.lastname@example.org
October 14, 2022 11:10:13
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has revealed, as never before, the true essence of the current unjust and unsustainable world order.
Never before has humanity had such a scientific and technological potential or this extraordinary capacity for generating wealth and wellbeing. However, never before had the world been so unequal or the inequality so deep.
A total of 828 million people -10 per cent of the world’s population- are starving, while some 50 million boys and girls suffer from emaciation, the deadliest form of malnutrition.
Unemployment shall affect 207 million people by 2022 -21 million more as compared to 2019. In the middle of the fourth industrial revolution, 773 million of human beings cannot read or write.
Around 6.5 million people have died as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Vaccines for combating the infection are inaccessible to 1 billion persons living in low-income countries. In 2021, pharmaceutical transnationals earned 84.588 billion dollars.
The foreign debt has been paid for several times, but is multiplying. Paradoxically, the world’s military expenditure grows swiftly and for the first time in history has exceeded the figure of 2 trillion dollars.
There is nothing that can justify the fact that humanity continues to be threatened by the existence of almost 13,000 nuclear weapons. We advocate for the universality of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.
How much more could we do if those resources would be destined to promote health and development?
How many COVID-19 deaths could have been avoided?
How many boys and girls would be saved from starvation and preventable or curable diseases?
Greenhouse gases reached record concentrations in 2021, and we are headed in the same direction in 2022. Average sea levels have risen to a new maximum. The last seven years have been the warmest on record.
We cannot go on ignoring the warning signs alerting us to the imminent climatic disaster. We have but one Earth, the only home to all. Action is needed now, without more delays.
The “philosophy of war and pillage” and capitalism’s irrational patterns of production and consumption, denounced by President Fidel Castro, will lead us to catastrophe.
International relations are treading a highly dangerous path. Washington’s offensive aimed at subjugating States by threat and economic and political or diplomatic coercion, so as to subject them to an order based on its capricious rules, combined with the expansion of NATO and the development of an aggressive doctrine and the fifth-generation unconventional warfare, inevitably leads to a climate of tension and conflict, whose outcomes are unpredictable.
Cuba, a small island developing State, has paid a high price for defending its legitimate right to exist as a sovereign, independent nation.
For over six decades, we have resisted a ruthless, unilateral, economic, commercial and financial blockade, extremely intensified to unprecedented levels since 2019 and during the pandemic.
Three decades since the first resolution of this Assembly against the blockade, Washington continues to ignore the demands of the international community to put an end to this cruel, illegal policy towards Cuba.
There are ongoing attempts to cause shortages of materials; scarcities; to sow despair, dissatisfaction and harm the Cuban people.
The US government has put additional pressures on governments, banks and business people worldwide, interested in relations with Cuba. All our sources of revenue and the inflow of foreign currency are being obsessively persecuted with the aim of provoking economic collapse.
As a result, the Cuban economy has come under huge pressures affecting industry; the provision of services; creating shortages of food and medicines and undermining consumption and the general wellbeing of the population.
The human damage to all the Cuban families this policy has generated, impossible to quantify, is stark, real and significant.
The blockade is an act of economic war in times of peace.
The current US administration has continued to enforce the most aggressive pressure measures against our country adopted by President Trump’s administration.
Cuba continues to face the unwarranted inclusion in the arbitrary and unilateral State Department’s list of countries that allegedly sponsor terrorism.
This slanderous designation stigmatizes our institutions and organizations and hugely complicates financial and commercial operations and the arrangements for payments and credits.
Cuba, which has been a victim of State terrorism, does not, nor will ever promote terrorism. On the contrary, we condemn it in all its forms and guises.
The US government willfully manipulates highly sensitive topics such as terrorism, religion, democracy, human rights, justice, corruption and human rights.
Double standards, inconsistency, selectivity and political manipulation are harmful to the human rights cause.
The previous speech delivered by the Foreign Minister of the Czech Republic, who did not dare to mention the crime of the blockade against Cuba, is a sad example of this.
We have unequivocally advised the US government that the reasons that incite irregular migration and cause the loss of human lives must be addressed, such as the US non-compliance, since 2017, of its obligation, under the bilateral agreements in force, of granting no less than 20 000 immigrant visas every year; the existence of the Cuban Adjustment Act; the politically motivated privileged treatment; the restrictive pressures on countries of irregular transit; and the tightened economic blockade.
The announcement that the immigrant visa processing will return to the US embassy in Havana is a positive step.
Cuba reiterates its willingness to progress towards a better understanding with the US government, develop civilized relations and even cooperation between our two countries, on the basis of mutual respect and without detriment to our independence and sovereignty, despite the profound differences.
We highlight the valuable commitment as well as the recent expressions from Cubans and Cuban descendants in many parts of the world; as well as the expressions of respect for the sovereign rights of our country and against the ruthless US aggression, particularly the economic blockade.
Likewise, I deeply appreciate the statements made by Heads of State and Government in this General Debate, the historical support of this Assembly and the expressions of solidarity towards Cuba by governments, celebrities, political organizations and solidarity, social and popular movements the world over.
Today, such solidarity and support continue to be indispensable.
Despite the enormous challenges, the Cuban people and government have not faltered in their commitment to progress in the building of a more just, democratic, prosperous and sustainable socialist society.
We defeated COVID-19 with our own vaccines and the soundness of our public health and scientific system. We were able to modestly cooperate with 42 countries and territories by sending out 58 medical brigades during the worst moments of the pandemic.
We are working to recover the economic and social life of the country; support the transformation of our communities and preserve and expand social programs.
We continue to improve our legal system to ensure full enjoyment of human rights by all Cubans of both sexes; and enrich the system of social justice that has been enjoyed by several generations.
On September 25, following an extensive process of popular consultation and participation, we will be holding a referendum on an innovative and inclusive Family Code. This will be an exercise of genuine and direct democracy and effective power of the Cuban people.
The “unity amidst diversity” proposed by the then President Raúl Castro Ruz among the countries of the South is possible. The Community of Latin American and Caribbean States is going from strength to strength and creates the conditions so that our region moves towards higher forms of integration and cooperation, based on the postulates of the Proclamation of Latin America & the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace.
We appreciate the principled stance taken by various countries of our region in relation to the arbitrary exclusion from hemispheric forums.
We renew our support for and solidarity with the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, its constitutional president, Nicolás Maduro Moros, and the civic and military unity of its people, in view of the attempts to destabilize and subvert the internal order of this sister nation. We oppose the application of unilateral coercive measures against
We condemn the imperialist attempts to destabilize Nicaragua’s Government of Reconciliation and National Unity. We reaffirm our solid support for the brother people of Nicaragua and its president, Daniel Ortega.
We confirm our solidarity with the sister nations of the Caribbean and support their legitimate claim for reparations for the damaging effects of colonialism and slavery. They need and deserve fair, special and differentiated treatment.
We reiterate our historical commitment to free determination and independence of the people of Puerto Rico.
Haiti needs a special contribution from the international community, for the country’s reconstruction and development. Humanity has a debt with that foundational Republic
We support the legitimate claim by President Alberto Fernández and his people for the Argentinean Republic’s sovereignty over the Malvinas Islands,South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands and the surrounding territorial waters.
We convey our full solidarity to the Argentine Vice President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, who is a victim of an unfair and unfounded harassment by the legal authorities and the media and was recently the target of a despicable assassination attempt.
We reiterate our unwavering commitment to peace in Colombia. The clearly peace-loving stance of the current President, Gustavo Petro, and the parties concerned, deserve to count on the support of the region and the international community.
The resources needed to support the African Union’s Agenda 2063, a road map for the development of this brother continent, should be contributed.
We advocate the search for a peaceful, negotiated solution to the situation imposed on Syria and call for an end to foreign interference and full respect for its sovereignty and territorial integrity.
We support a just, wide-ranging and lasting solution to the Middle East conflict, which guarantees the real exercise of the inalienable right of the Palestinian people to build their own State within the pre-1967 borders, with its capital in East Jerusalem, and the end to Israeli occupation of the occupied Palestinian territories.
We reaffirm our unwavering solidarity with the Saharan people.
We oppose the unilateral coercive measures imposed on the Islamic Republic of Iran.
We denounce the imposition of unjust, unilateral, economic measures on the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and the foreign interference in its internal affairs.
We oppose the interference in the domestic affairs of the Republic of Belarus.
We reiterate our opposition to the imposition of unilateral sanctions on the Russian Federation.
We condemn the unfounded campaigns aimed at discrediting the People’s Republic of China and the attempts to breach its territorial integrity and sovereignty. We reaffirm our steadfast support for the “One China” principle.
We call for a serious, constructive and realistic diplomatic solution of the present crisis in Ukraine, by peaceful means and unreserved observance of the rules of International Law that guarantee security and sovereignty for all.
Cuba will continue to raise its voice to reject domination and hegemonism, unilateral coercive measures, genocidal blockades and the attempts to impose a single culture and a single model on the world.
We will never renounce the defense of the independence, sovereignty and free determination of the peoples, without foreign interference or intervention.
For our glorious past, for the present and the future of the new generations of Cubans, under the leadership of President Miguel Díaz-Canel, we will resist in a creative way and we will struggle tirelessly until we realize our aspirations of peace and development with equity and social justice for Cuba and the world.
Translated by ESTI