The president of Cuba, Miguel Díaz-Canel, criticized the United States on Wednesday for excluding his country from the Summit of the Americas and he crossed out the appointment of lost opportunity due to an outdated, discriminatory and interfering policy of Washington.
“Cuba changed, our America changed. But the empire did not change,” said the president during a speech at the Palace of the Revolution cited by Eph. In his opinion, the Summit of the Americas reissues the Monroe Doctrine – summed up in the phrase “America for the Americans” – and is a “show with a neo-colonial tinge” from which a “substantive discussion” cannot be expected.
.@DiazCanelB 📽️| Against this Latin America that calls things by their name and does not ask for permission to exercise their sovereign rights, the list of those excluded was drawn up.#SummitWithoutExclusions pic.twitter.com/PnxFCmpp8J
— Cuban Foreign Ministry (@CubaMINREX) June 8, 2022
For this reason, he considered it a merit not to be at the meeting in Los Angeles: “We are honored to lead the list (of those excluded) together with Nicaragua and Venezuela.” Díaz-Canel also attacked the White House’s argument to exclude Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela for not being democratic and affirmed that “the United States lacks the moral authority to speak of democracy”, when it does not promote it inside or outside its borders.
“When a strong people wants to give battle to another, it compels the alliance and the service to those who need it. The first thing a people does to dominate another is to separate it from the other peoples”, he was quoted as saying by the official newspaper. Granma.
He pointed out that Washington equates democracy and capitalism, when in his opinion they are “opposing concepts”, and assured that “democracy and the promotion of human rights do not seem to be the principles of its foreign policy”. That is why he believes that the meeting will not address “the most serious problems in Latin America and the Caribbean”, such as the causes of migration, economic development, inequality, racism, discrimination, technology transfer, but rather it is just a “publicity show” aimed at the “internal politics” of the US.
On migration, he said that it is related to the underdevelopment caused by the economic system and neoliberalism and that the “repressive formulas” proposed by the US “are not the answer” to its causes. In the specific case of Cuban migration, which has grown significantly in recent months, he pointed out that the United States is applying the “perfect recipe” to promote irregular migration by maintaining economic sanctions while providing facilities to Cubans who come to their territory.
The Cuban president regretted that the United States wasted the opportunity to have made a “transcendental contribution” to the region. “It could have been in another way,” said Díaz-Canel, who pointed out that this required “humility”, “self-criticism”, “respect” and “solidarity” on the part of Washington. He also took the opportunity to highlight the general “repudiation” that the exclusions of Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua have caused in the region.
At this point, he thanked the “notable absences” of leaders who, in protest against Washington’s veto, have not attended the Summit of the Americas, such as that of the president of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador.
EXCLUSIONS TO CIVIL SOCIETY
Díaz-Canel denounced the exclusion of government representatives from Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela, but also highlighted that some members of the pro-government civil society in Cuba have not been able to travel to the United States. “They are not satisfied with saying who and how the Cuban government should be, now they intend to define who the representatives of civil society are,” he criticized.
According to the Cuban authorities, 145 representatives of pro-government civil society were invited to the Summit of the Peoples, an alternative forum held in parallel in Los Angeles, but did not obtain a visa. “We regret not having a meaningful participation” in the People’s Summit, he added.
The Cuban government and some of these representatives of civil society have individually accused the US consulate in Havana of having denied them visas for political reasons.
Meanwhile, the Spanish agency recalls that the diplomatic legation has indicated on Twitter that the non-migrant visas they requested have not been processed there since 2017 -as a result of health incidents not yet clarified-, but in Guyana. He denied having denied visas.
@USEmbCuba has not denied any visa application to travel to the People’s Summit. As hosts of the #SummitAmericasWe welcome the participation of civil society, and we are including independent voices in all aspects of the Summit. https://t.co/9av1ap4usi
— Embassy of the United States in Cuba (@USEmbCuba) June 7, 2022
For their part, at least three Cuban activists critical of the government have denounced in recent days that the authorities of their country have not allowed them to travel to the United States to participate in forums for civil society at the Summit of the Americas.
One of them, Saily González, explained to Eph who applied, received an invitation from the Summit of the Americas, and obtained a business visa to travel to Los Angeles at the US consulate in Havana. It was then that State security told him that they would not let him leave the country.