UN General Assembly calls for end to US economic blockade against Cuba

The world has spoken: The US embargo against Cuba is immoral, illegal, and must be dismantled!

Today, October 27 the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted in a record vote of 191 in favour and two against, with no abstentions Cuba’s resolution Necessity of Ending the Economic, Commercial and Financial Embargo imposed by the United States of America against Cuba. This is the twenty-fourth successive year in which the UN has adopted the resolution condemning the economic sanctions and other punitive measures imposed on the Republic of Cuba by the government of the United States.

The U.S. policy has an extra-territorial character that inflicts severe penalties on entities conducting business with Cuba, and is recognized as a flagrant violation of the UN Charter and customary international law.

Along with Israel, the U.S. was the lone voice against the resolution. The U.S. representative stated that the U.S. government “regrets” that Cuba proceeded with the resolution. In his speech to the General Assembly, Cuba’s foreign minister Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla pointed out many practical ways in which the U.S. president can reduce the effects of the blockade on Cuba, saying such steps are necessary for the process of normalizing relations between the two countries.

For your information: Economic blockade negatively impacts Cuban healthcare system

The U.S. blockade has resulted in incalculable damages to the Cuban healthcare system, yet the country continues to provide free healthcare to the entire population

cuba health care for all

Granma (October 15, 2015) – THE damages caused by the U.S. blockade to the Cuban healthcare system are incalculable, but the island’s government is committed to finding the solution to any medical emergency, despite the expense, stated Pedro Luis Veliz, director of the National Council of Scientific Health Societies.

Many people are often unaware of the efforts undertaken by the country to provide free healthcare to the population, added Luis Veliz, also president of the Cuban Society of Intensive and Emergency Medicine.

In regards to the damages caused by the blockade, he explained that they cannot be limited to a specific year, given that, from the very beginning of this unjust policy, the country has been unable to purchase U.S. made products or those which contain more than 10% of components made in that country.

This affects emergency, intensive care and ventilation equipment, as well as thermodynamic, cardiovascular, neurological monitoring apparatus and medicines, putting the Cuban healthcare system in a difficult position when a critical patient arrives, noted Veliz.

According to the director, the country goes to great lengths to maintain medical equipment so that it lasts longer, but when it reaches the end of its productive life it must be replaced.

He also noted that the country’s scientific societies are affiliated with more than 180 international organizations, but that delays occur in the payment of membership fees, given the difficulty of carrying out economic transactions – a direct consequence of the blockade.

Regarding the reestablishment of diplomatic relations between Cuba and the U.S. Veliz commented that the political, social and economic impact of the process has yet to reach the Cuban people, but that there has been a resurgence of hope that the U.S. blockade will be completely eliminated.

The accumulated financial losses to the Cuban Public Health sector currently stand at around 2.5 billion dollars since the blockade was first imposed in 1960, while between April 2014 and April 2015 the sector saw 76,897,734 dollars in lost revenue.

However, as Cuba’s Minister of Foreign Relations Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla, commented when presenting the country’s UN report on the need to end the blockade, its social impact is difficult to calculate.

Source:  Economic blockade negatively impacts Cuban healthcare system  Granma



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