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Cablegate: 62nd General Assembly Adopts Cuba Embargo

VZCZCXYZ0009
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUCNDT #0935/01 3041747
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 311747Z OCT 07
FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 2915
INFO RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 1701
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 0326
RUEHUB/USINT HAVANA 0214
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS

UNCLAS USUN NEW YORK 000935

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ETRD PHUM UN CU
SUBJECT: 62ND GENERAL ASSEMBLY ADOPTS CUBA EMBARGO
RESOLUTION

REF: SECSTATE 150043

1. (U) On October 30, 2007, the General Assembly (GA)
adopted the Cuban-sponsored resolution on the U.S. embargo by
a vote of 184-4, with one abstention. The U.S. was joined by
Israel, Palau, and the Marshall Islands in voting against it.
Micronesia abstained. Albania, El Salvador, and Iraq were
absent and did not vote. Ambassador Ronald Godard delivered
the U.S. Explanation of Vote and Right of Reply statements.
All statements by Member States are available on
www.un.org/webcast.

2. (U) Cuban Foreign Minister Felipe Perez Roque introduced
the draft resolution, entitled "Necessity of Ending the
Economic, Commercial, and Financial Embargo imposed by the
United Sates of America against Cuba" (full text in
paragraph 5). Cuba has tabled this resolution annually in
the GA since 1992, and every year it has been passed by an
overwhelming majority. In his statement, Roque claimed that
the embargo not only has caused Cuba to lose over $89
billion, but also represents an "effrontery of International
Law, (and) to the purposes and principles enshrined in the
Charter of the United Nations." Roque highlighted the
inability of Cuban children to receive medicines manufactured
by U.S. companies and listed examples to demonstrate that
this "extraterritorial enforcement of American laws" has
prevented various third countries from trading with Cuba.
Accusing the U.S. of adopting "new measures, bordering on
madness and fanaticism," Roque responded directly to excerpts
from President Bush,s October 24 statement. After labeling
the Bush administration a "criminal dictatorship" that is
"fraudulently in power," FM Roque equated the "genocidal
blockade" with an attempt to re-conquer Cuba by force. Roque
ended his speech by calling for the release of the "Five
Cuban Heroes," who are currently incarcerated in the U.S. for
espionage, and shouting "Viva Cuba Libre." Both the Cuban
statement and the subsequent vote tally were received with
applause.

3. (U) Twenty-seven other delegations spoke in support of
the resolution, including the Russian Federation, China,
Pakistan on behalf of the G-77, Egypt on behalf of the
Non-Aligned Movement, Bahamas on behalf of the Caribbean
Community, Portugal on behalf of the EU, and Uruguay on
behalf of MERCOSUR. Common themes that emerged included
opposition to unilaterally imposed measures and respect for
international law, the UN Charter, and WTO regulations. Many
speakers also claimed that the embargo amounts to a violation
of the principles of sovereign equality of States and
non-intervention in domestic affairs. Venezuela echoed FM
Roque in labeling the embargo an act of genocide, while
Zimbabwe, Sudan, and Iran sympathized with the Cuban
government, which the Sudanese representative referred to as
a fellow victim of U.S. "crimes against humanity." Nicaragua
joined Cuba in calling for the closing of Guantanamo Bay and
the release of the five incarcerated Cuban citizens.

4. (U) Australia and Portugal qualified their support of the
resolution with condemnation of the Cuban regime,s human
rights record. Portugal, speaking on behalf of the EU,
called on Cuba to release all political prisoners and
acknowledged that "the United States trade policy towards
Cuba is fundamentally a bilateral issue." However, Portugal
also urged the U.S. to implement the 18 May 1998
Understanding, which commits the U.S. to "resist(ing) future
extraterritorial legislation of this kind." Australia
underlined that holding political prisoners and failing to
comply with international human rights standards "is not an
internal matter."

5. (U) Begin text of General Assembly Resolution A/RES/62/3:

The General Assembly,

Determined to encourage strict compliance with the purposes
and principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations,

Reaffirming, among other principles, the sovereign equality
of States, non-intervention and non-interference in their
internal affairs and freedom of international trade and
navigation, which are also enshrined in many international
legal instruments,

Recalling the statements of the Heads of State or Government
at the Ibero-American Summits concerning the need to
eliminate unilateral application of economic and trade
measures by one State against another that affect the free
flow of international trade,


Concerned at the continued promulgation and application by
Member States of laws and regulations, such as that
promulgated on 12 March 1996 known as the "Helms-Burton Act,"
the extraterritorial effects of which affect the sovereignty
of other States, the legitimate interests of entities or
persons under their jurisdiction and the freedom of trade and
navigation,

Taking note of declarations and resolutions of different
intergovernmental forums, bodies, and Governments that
express the rejection by the international community and
public opinion of the promulgation and application of
measures of the kind referred to above,

Recalling its resolutions 47/19 of 24 November 1992, 48/16 of
3 November 1993, 49/9 of 26 October 1994, 50/10 of 2 November
1995, 51/17 of 12 November 1996, 52/10 of 5 November 1997,
53/4 of 14 October 1998, 54/21 of 9 November 1999, 55/20 of 9
November 2000, 56/9 of 27 November 2001, 57/11 of 12 November
2002, 58/7 of 4 November 2003, 59/11 of 28 October 2004,
60/12 of 8 November 2005, and 61/11 of 8 November 2006,

Concerned that, since the adoption of its resolutions 47/19,
48/16, 49/9, 50/10, 51/17, 52/10, 53/4, 54/21, 55/20, 56/9,
57/11, 58/7, 59/11, 60/12, and 61/11, further measures of
that nature aimed at strengthening and extending the
economic, commercial and financial embargo against Cuba
continue to be promulgated and applied, and concerned also at
the adverse effects of such measures on the Cuban people and
on Cuban nationals living in other countries,

1. Takes note of the report of the Secretary-General on the
implementation of resolution 61/11;

2. Reiterates its call upon all States to refrain from
promulgating and applying laws and measures of the kind
referred to in the preamble to the present resolution, in
conformity with their obligations under the Charter of the
United Nations and international law, which, inter alia,
reaffirm the freedom of trade and navigation;

3. Once again urges States that have and continue to apply
such laws and measures to take the necessary steps to repeal
or invalidate them as soon as possible in accordance with
their legal regime;

4. Requests the Secretary-General, in consultation with the
appropriate organs and agencies of the United Nations system,
to prepare a report on the implementation of the present
resolution in the light of the purposes and principles of the
Charter and international law and to submit it to the General
Assembly at its sixty-third session;

5. Decides to include in the provisional agenda of its
sixty-third session the item entitled "Necessity of ending
the economic, commercial and financial embargo imposed by the
United States of America against Cuba."

End Text
Khalilzad

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