8 de diciembre de 2021

Cuban rejection to US coercive measures broadly supported at UN General Assembly

Cuba presented at the gates of the next session of the UN General Assembly, a resolution that expresses, among other points, the rejection of unilateral coercive measures.

Although the United States and Israel protested an amendment to the resolution of COVID-19 impact, the modification promoted by Cuba was very well received by the General Assembly, which strongly urged to oppose any unilateral economic policy and financial or commercial sanctions.

The Cuban representation, on behalf of 20 other delegations, presented that amendment based on the language of the 2030 Agenda, which rejects the promulgation and application of unilateral coercive measures, and urges its elimination.

That amendment was supported and adopted by the majority of the international community, highlighted the alternate permanent representative of Cuba to the UN, Ana Silvia Rodriguez, on her official Twitter account. Originally, the draft resolution called for the urgent removal of ‘unjustified obstacles’ in order to ensure universal, timely and equitable access and fair distribution of essential health technologies in the response to the pandemic.

With 132 votes in favor, it was decided to amend the resolution to urge ‘to abstain from promulgating and applying any unilateral economic, financial or commercial measure that is not in accordance with international law and the Charter of the United Nations and that prevents the full fulfillment of economic and social development, especially in developing countries.

The United States also tried to remove two paragraphs from the resolution, one referring to women’s rights to ‘sexual and reproductive health’, and the other to ‘promoting sustainable global transportation’.

But his proposals were rejected by the General Assembly, which brings together the 193 member states of the UN. In addition to being against including the issue of sanctions in the resolution, the US representation opposed all references to the World Health Organization, to which President Donald Trump withdrew his support.

Despite such US pressure, supported by Israel, the General Assembly on Friday approved a resolution that addresses the impact of the pandemic and recovery efforts from a comprehensive perspective in areas where the UN system works.

Although many expected its adoption by consensus, a vote had to be taken at the request of the United States, which yielded 168 votes in favor, two abstentions (Ukraine and Hungary) and only two countries against (the already named northern nation and Israel).

The resolution adopted, which is not legally binding, highlights that COVID-19 is one of the greatest global challenges in the history of the United Nations and calls for ‘intensified international cooperation and solidarity to contain, mitigate and overcome the pandemic and its consequences. ‘.

It also urges UN member states to allow all countries to have timely, unhindered access to quality, safe, effective and affordable diagnostics, therapies, medicines and vaccines, as well as equipment for the response to COVID-19.

Likewise, the document recognizes the role of extensive immunization against this disease as a global public good that allows ending the pandemic, once there are safe, quality and effective vaccines.

(Translated by Yeney Perez Corona)

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