ADDS REMARKS, CHANGES THROUGHOUT
By Beyza Binnur Donmez
ANKARA (AA) - Cuba’s president urged the UN to take "urgent" steps for democratization reforms Tuesday as he blasted the US for taking unilateral moves globally.
"It is urgent to reform the UN. This powerful organization, which emerged after the loss of millions of lives in two world wars and as a result of a world understanding of the importance of dialogue, negotiation, cooperation and international law, must not postpone any further its updating and democratization," Miguel Diaz-Canel told the UN General Assembly's 75th session. "Today's world needs the UN just as the one where it came into being did."
"There is no way to sustain any longer, as if it were natural and unshakable, an unequal, unjust and anti-democratic International order where selfishness prevails over solidarity and the mean interests of a powerful minority over the legitimate aspirations of millions of people," he added.
- US 'hostile policy' against Cuba continued amid pandemic
Diaz-Cannel said US President Donald Trump's administration has "brutally" tightened restrictions against Cuba as part of its "hostile policy" in the last two years and Washington’s economic blockade continued even during the coronavirus outbreak.
Despite US sanctions, Cuba has been able to fight the virus by immediately implementing a series of measures and having
a high-quality and universal health system, he said.
He accused the US of attacking or imposing new sanctions against Cuba "every week."
In the face of international criticism, the US has maintained a comprehensive economic embargo on Cuba since 1962.
Diaz-Cannel denounced the “double standard” of the US in the fight against terror and reminded the virtual audience about Washington's reaction to a shooting at the Cuban embassy in the US earlier this year.
"Paradoxically, however, it has refused to term as terrorist the attack that was carried out against the Cuban embassy in Washington on April 30, 2020, when an individual armed with an assault rifle fired over 30 rounds against the diplomatic mission and later admitted to his intent to kill," he said.
- Cuba backs Palestine
Turning to Israel's attempts to annex additional territories in the West Bank, Diaz-Canel voiced support for Palestine, citing Cuba’s rejection of Israel's plan and said Havana stands by the Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital.
"We demand a just solution to the conflict in the Middle East, which must include the real exercise by the Palestinian people of the inalienable right to build their own state within the borders prior to 1967 and with East Jerusalem as its capital," he said. "We reject Israel´s attempts to annex more territories in the West Bank."