This is historic after so much time American President visit Cuba.

Something strange is happening and in the same year and month black American President Obama visit Cuba and also Pope Francis. Strange things looks like Cuba it's the center of the world.
AFP 550263929 I DIP CUB -

Cuban President Raul Castro and out-going American President Barak Obama emerged from two hours of meetings in Havana Monday agreeing on at least one thing: The 54-year economic embargo of Cuba needs to end so the economic ties between the two nations can improve.

At a mostly cordial but spirited press conference afterward, stark differences quickly emerged on issues of democracy and human rights. After unexpectedly agreeing to allow U.S. reporters to ask questions, Castro pushed back on questions about his government's human rights record, including the imprisonment of protesters and dissidents.

"I have come here to bury the last remnant of the Cold War in the Americas," he said to applause. "I have come here to extend the hand of friendship to the Cuban people."

"Did you ask if we have political prisoners?" he challenged a television reporter, after consulting with an aide about whether he should even answer the question. "Give me a list of the political prisoners and I will release them directly. Give me a name or names ... It is not correct to ask me about political prisoners in general." 

Cuban President Raul Castro and President Obama hold
"Not everyone agrees with me on this," Obama said, "but I believe those human rights are universal. I believe they are the rights of the American people, the Cuban people and people around the world."

Human rights groups quickly released their own lists, saying the Castro regime detained 8,000 people for political reasons just last year. And Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes said he's shared many such lists with the Cuban government over more than two years.

Obama said the United States "will continue to speak out on democracy and fundamental human rights," but also sought to reassure Cuba that he would not impose its values on Cuba. "Cuba is sovereign and rightly has great pride, and the future of Cuba will be decided by Cubans, and not anybody else."

Fifteen months after Obama and Castro announced their intent to normalize relations, Obama said he's done almost all he can do to lift travel and trade restrictions without action by Congress. But he said it was only a matter of time before Congress votes to lift the embargo, and that the progress would continue even after he leaves office.

"It's time to lift the embargo," Obama told Cuban officials and dignitaries gathered at the Grad Teatro de la Havana Alicia Alonso, including President Raul Castro. "But even if we lifted the embargo tomorrow, Cubans would not realize their potential without continued change here in Cuba."

"The embargo's going to end. When, I can't be entirely sure," Obama said. "The reason is that what we did for 50 years did not serve our interests or the interests of the Cuban people."

On that, the two leaders agreed. But they also disagreed on a number of human rights issues. "There are profound differences between our countries that will not go away," Castro said. Obama said relations "will not be transformed overnight."

Human rights, Obama said, does not have to be the only issue U.S. and Cuban leaders discuss in the future, "but this is something we're going to stay on."

Castro said he did not think human rights issues "should be politicized." Castro said human rights mean different things to different countries. For example, women in Cuba receive equal pay for the same work as men, which is not true in other nations.

The extraordinary press conference allowed Castro to show the rhetorical style that, while more subdued than his brother Fidel, remained animated and defiant even at age 84. There were some bizarre moments, as when Castro aides suddenly appeared from behind a curtain and whispered comments to him. When Obama tried to get Castro to take more questions than they had originally agreed to, Castro demurred.

"There is a program here to be fulfilled, I know if I stay here you will ask 500 questions," he said. "I said I would answer one. Well, I will answer one and a half."

This was Obama's landmark visit to Cuba and it follows the December 17, 2014, agreement to begin normalizing relations between the U.S. and Cuba after a more than a half century of estrangement. He is the first sitting president to visit Cuba since 1959.


Post a Comment