Prensa Latina

By Waldo Mendiluza


United Nations, Oct 27 (Prensa Latina) UN experts on human rights here harshly criticized the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the United States against Cuba and demanded its end.

In declarations to Prensa Latina, both the independent expert for the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, Alfred de Zayas, and the Special Rapporteur on the impact of unilateral coercive measures on human rights, Idriss Jazairy stood against the siege.

De Zayas said the blockade violates human rights and international laws, and it is incompatible with the UN Charter.

‘The blockade violates so many human rights and principles of international law that takes your breath knowing that it continues, and that every year is still needed to vote on this,’ he said regarding the presentation here at the General Assembly of a new draft resolution demanding its removal.

According to the lawyer and American writer, it is unacceptable the damage that the punishment of Washington causes to the Cuban population, which generates global rejection.

‘Obviously the international consensus, except for the US and Israel, has always been the lifting of the measure, because it is incompatible with the purposes and principles of the Charter’, said the expert, appointed in 2012 by the Human Rights Council .

For his part, Jazairy called as a challenge to the world conscience the application of this blockade against Cuba.

According to the Special Rapporteur, it should be highlighted the ‘courageous initiative’ of the US President Barack Obama to act on the lifting of the siege, but ‘it is urgent to move from declaration phase to the action phase’.

I must say that the situation has not changed so far, the Cuban people continue to suffer and its most vulnerable sector continues to be hostage of this coercive US measure, he warned.

Despite the restoration of diplomatic relations between Havana and Washington last July, and the bilateral steps towards normalization of ties, the blockade continues.

In this regard, Jazairy said to be clear that the cessation does not depend only on an executive decision, because actions of Congress must also take place, since it became a law in 1996 with the adoption of the Helms-Burton Act.

In that sense, the Algerian human rights expert recognized the difficulty of the current situation in the Capitol (given the political battle between Obama and the Republican majority), but expressed his expectations that the measures will be lifted.

The UN General Assembly votes today for the twenty-fourth consecutive year on a draft resolution on the need to eliminate the US blockade, an initiative that since 1992 receives clear support.

Last year, the text had the support of 188 out of the 193 UN members, leaving the United States and Israel isolated in its refusal.