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Cablegate: Cuba - Libertad Act Response From Poland

VZCZCXRO2845
OO RUEHAG RUEHDF RUEHIK RUEHLZ RUEHROV RUEHSR
DE RUEHWR #1405 3451451
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 101451Z DEC 08
FM AMEMBASSY WARSAW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 7480
INFO RUCNMEM/EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
RUEHKW/AMCONSUL KRAKOW IMMEDIATE 2198
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEHUB/USINT HAVANA IMMEDIATE 0049

UNCLAS WARSAW 001405

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

STATE FOR WHA/CCA DMCFARLAND

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ETRD ETTC PREL CU PL
SUBJECT: CUBA - LIBERTAD ACT RESPONSE FROM POLAND

REF: SECSTATE 126578

1. (U) Post provides the following in response to ref A
questions.

2. (U) Promotion of democracy and human rights in Cuba:
Poland has an excellent track record with respect to
supporting freedom and democracy in Cuba, and believes that
its experience in the Solidarity trade movement and its own
transition from communism to a vibrant democracy give it
particular expertise to share with the Castro regime's
opponents.

3. (SBU) Public Statements: Daniel Gromann, Counselor in
the MFA's Americas Division (and until August 2007 Poland's
Charge d'Affaires in Havana) told EconOff that during the
last six months, Poland continued to support Cuban dissidents
in internal EU discussions, and also continued its outreach
through its embassy to Cuban civil society and dissidents.
On May 30, a "Free Cuba" caucus was formed in the Polish
parliament. The caucus has seven members from the Sejm (the
lower house) and two members from the Senate. These include
a number of political heavy hitters.

4. (SBU) High-level diplomatic visits: Gromann said that
there have been no high-level diplomatic visits between
Poland and Cuba in the last six months.

5. (SBU) Humanitarian assistance in the wake of Hurricanes
Gustav and Ike: Gromann said that in a diplomatic note Poland
offered EUR 70,000 in official government humanitarian
assistance. Cuba rejected the offer in discussions at the
Ambassadorial level, although it never sent a return
diplomatic note. The Cubans stressed the rejection was in
accordance with their then-policy of accepting EU aid only
from Spain and Belgium, and was not intended as a "hostile
gesture."

6. (SBU) Investment: Gromann stated he was unaware of any
investment by Polish firms in Cuba. There was no Polish
representation at the Havana Trade Fair on November 3.

7. (U) Trade Agreements: At present there are no
legally-binding trade agreements between Poland and Cuba.

8. (SBU) Exchange Programs: There are no known exchange
programs between Poland and Cuba, and certainly no
Cuban-government sponsored doctors working in Poland. It is
possible that a few Cubans are students
in Polish universities.
ASHE

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