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Cablegate: General Debate Continues: Cuba and Myanmar Speak

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DE RUCNDT #0890/01 2830207
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 100207Z OCT 09
FM USMISSION USUN NEW YORK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 7303
INFO RUEHAE/AMEMBASSY ASMARA 1784
RUEHBE/AMEMBASSY BELMOPAN
RUEHUP/AMEMBASSY BUDAPEST 0422
RUEHDM/AMEMBASSY DAMASCUS 0455
RUEHKI/AMEMBASSY KINSHASA 1949
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RUEHMKA/AMEMBASSY MANAMA 0093
RUEHME/AMEMBASSY MEXICO 0811
RUEHNE/AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI 2823
RUEHGO/AMEMBASSY RANGOON 0338
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME 1160
RUEHGP/AMEMBASSY SINGAPORE 2030
RUEHTU/AMEMBASSY TUNIS 0120
RUEHWD/AMEMBASSY WINDHOEK 1330
RUEHUB/USINT HAVANA 0285

UNCLAS USUN NEW YORK 000890

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV ECON KPKO UNGA AORC SM WA PE BM
MX, BA, CU, TS, ER, SY, NG, SU, CG, MU, BH, HU, SN
SUBJECT: GENERAL DEBATE CONTINUES: CUBA AND MYANMAR SPEAK

1. SUMMARY: The eleventh plenary meeting of the 64th UN
general assembly was held on the morning of September 28. The
following countries spoke: San Marino, Namibia, Peru,
Myanmar, Mexico, Bahrain, Cuba, Tunisia, Eritrea; Syria;
Niger; Sudan; Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC); Oman;
Belize; Singapore; Hungary; Bhutan. The themes of the
economic crisis, climate change and United Nations reform,
specifically the expansion of permanent members of the
security council continued. Cuba spoke against the economic
embargo and blamed theses policies for much of its economic
problems. Myanmar spoke against UN sanctions. Full text of
statements is available at un.org/ga/64/generaldebate, video
archives are at un.org/webcast/2009html.

2. Myanmar Foreign Minister Thein Sein discussed the economic
crisis and stated that the developing countries are the
hardest hit. Thein Sein called on the developed countries to
increase their Overseas Development Assistance to the
developing world. He then addressed sanctions against
Myanmar stating they have "no moral basis as they not only
hinder the economic and social development of the people but
also interfere in matters which are essentially within the
domestic jurisdiction of the country." He blamed these on
"powerful nations" who want to pressure developing countries.
Thein Sein discussed his country's new constitution and the
planned elections. He stated that "democracy cannot be
imposed from the outside, and a system suitable for Myanmar
can only be born out of Myanmar society."

3. Cuban Foreign Minister Parrilla, after briefly mentioning
climate change and the economic crisis, blasted the United
States for the embargo on Cuba. He described it as a
"unilateral aggression that should be unilaterally
terminated." He stated that Cuba had hoped that after the
"infamous legacy of the George W. Bush regime had been sunk
in repudiation" relations would improve between the United
States and Cuba. He then went on to list the ways that the
embargo was hurting Cuba: restricted travel by Cubans and
Americans, freezing of funds by the Treasury, banning of
Cuban exports and restricting third country vessels that dock
in Cuba from going the U.S. ports. He called for a release
of the "five Cuban anti terrorism fighters." On Honduras,
Parilla advocated for a return of the constitutionally
elected President but also attacked the U.S. stating that
"the American fascist right, represented by Cheney, openly
supports and sustains the coup." He objected to US military
bases in Columbia, stating that they are "threatening the
revolutionary and progressive processes, particularly the
Bolivarian Revolution in the sister nation of Venezuela." He
said the economic crisis will cause an increase in world
hunger.

4. Mexico Foreign Minister Cantellano discussed the economic
crisis, climate change, Security Council reform and the
constitutional crisis in Honduras. She stated that Mexico
supports the adoption of development financing and the
finalization of the Doha Round. She warned of the food
crisis and how it can affect the Millennium Development
Goals. Mexico supports "solutions that increase the
representativeness of the Council, translate into better
accountability and does not jeopardize its efficacy."
Cantellano called for the dialogue on Honduras to continue
with the OAS toward a return of the constitutional
government. Peru Foreign Minister Belaunde echoed the call
for president Zeleya's return in Honduras. Belaunde called
for "dialogue that leads to the re-establishment of the
democratic system." He stated the issue of the human rights
of migrants stating that it is a tool for development for
both the origin and host countries. He also mentioned the
economic crisis, climate change and drug trafficking in the
region.

5. San Marino Foreign Minister Mularoni addressed UN reform
stating that the General Assembly needed to be revitalized
within the "global governance system." Mularoni praised the
adoption in 2006 of the Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy and
cautioned that human rights must be respected in all levels
of society. Namibia Foreign Minister Hausiku, echoing the AU
position, raised the issue of security council seats for
Africa. He also called for a lifting of the economic embargo
of Cuba.

6. Bahrain Foreign Minister Al Khalifa discussed the Arab -
Israeli conflict stating that "its sad legacy of misery and
human suffering envenoms international and regional
relations." Al Khalifa called for a two state solution based
on equal security for all the nations of the region. He
called on the international community, particularly "the most
influential leading powers" to exert influence to have Israel
dismantle all of the illegal settlements. On Iran, he called
for the nuclear program to be confronted in a manner to
"spare our region the threat of confrontation". Tunisia
Foreign Minister Addallah noted the United States stance on
the Middle East issue, specifically the two state solution,
and called on Israel to withdrawal from the "occupied Syrian
Golan and remaining Lebanese lands." Abdallah stressed the
reform of the UN, stating that Africa needed equitable
geographical representation within the United Nations. He
addressed how the youth are being affected by the economic
crisis. Tunisia also supported the lifting of the Cuban
embargo.

7. Eritrean Foreign Minister Osman Saleh supported the
reengineering of the United Nations as the world has "been
hijacked to serve the interest of the few." He insisted that
increasing the number of seats in the Security Council would
help reform the world order.

8. Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Al-Moualem spent most of his
address criticizing Israel for defying the Security Council,
its friends and allies, and the will of the international
community. Furthermore, he called on Israel to submit itself
to International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) review and to
adhere to the Non Proliferation Treaty. Al-Moualem described
the situation in Iraq as a serious concern for Syria and
condemned all terrorist acts in Iraq while denying any Syrian
involvement in the events. He supported Yemen, Sudan, and
Somalia in their efforts for peace and unity and called for
the removal of the sanctions on Cuba.

9. Niger Foreign Minister Aichatou Mindaoudou voiced the
concerns of the African Union to avoid the inappropriate use
of universal jurisdiction. She asked for a more inclusive
and transparent system to deal with global problems such as
climate change, food security, the financial crisis, and
conflict resolution.

10. Sudanese Adviser to the President Dr. Ghazi Salahuddin
Atabani, as Chairman of the Group of 77, criticized the
absence of democracy in international relations, particularly
in the Security Council. He commented on how the Palestine
issue has negatively affected the image of the United
Nations. Atabani welcomed President Obama's speech and hoped
that it will be turned into positive actions such as the
removal of sanctions and Sudan from the terror list.

11. Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) Foreign Minister
Alexis Thambwe Mwamba described the Middle East situation as
tenuous and was concerned about the status of Iraq and
Afghanistan. He noted there has been progress on many issues
in Africa: political dialogue in the Central African
Republic, neighborly exchanges between Chad and Sudan, and
the ceasefire in Burundi. Mwamba observed that a post-Kyoto
agreement was needed and commended Secretary-General Ban
Ki-moon for the September 22 Summit on Climate Change. He
appealed for Security Council reform, such as adding an
African country as a permanent member to reflect the
political and numerical weight of Africa in the United
Nations. Mwamba explained that DRC is improving but called
for justice with regards to sexual crimes against DRC girls
and women.

12. Oman Foreign Minister Yousef Bin Alawi Bin Abdullah
called for a just resolution to the Palestine-Israel dispute
and welcomed recent positive developments in Iraq. He
supported the Darfur peace talks and Somalia's efforts to
achieve peace and saw positive signs towards a diplomatic
solution between the "friendly Islamic Republic of Iran" and
the International Atomic Energy Agency.

13. Belize Foreign Minister Wilfred Elrington explained that
the economic crisis is just now reaching his country and
Belize is experiencing declining levels of revenue,
diminishing remittances, and a reduction in productivity.
According to Elrington, the current "club model"
international system (the United Nations, World Bank, IMF,
and WTO) is facing a crisis of legitimacy and can no longer
be governed by just a few nations. He worried about climate
change and saw it as a formidable challenge. He called for
an end to the embargo on Cuba and for more inclusion for
Taiwan.

14. Singapore Foreign Minister George Yeo commented that the
global outlook is not as bleak today as it was last year. He
warned against protectionism and against government
intervention in markets as that could lead to more risk
taking. Yeo recommended the reform of the Bretton Woods
institutions and said a balance needs to be struck between
inclusiveness and effectiveness.

15. Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Balazs urged member
nations not to let the economic crisis distract them from
their MDG obligations. He called for a comprehensive
strategy to address climate change at Copenhagen. Balazs
reaffirmed Hungary's support for the sovereignty of Georgia,
stabilization in Afghanistan, non-proliferation and a two
state solution in the Middle East. He described Iran's
nuclear program as a serious concern "in flagrant violation
of its international obligations." Balazs advocated for
human rights, as a newly elected member of the Human Rights
Council, and for the rights of minorities.

16. Bhutan Foreign Minister Daw Penjo said Bhutan's
successful transition to a democratic constitutional monarchy
is in need of nurturing and strengthening and highlighted
successes such as an average eight percent GDP growth, 60
percent literacy rate, and 90 percent health coverage.
Bhutan will chair the April 2010 South Asian Association for
Regional Cooperation (SAARC) meeting which will focus on
climate change. Penjo advocated expansion of both permanent
and non-permanent members of the Security Council,
specifically adding the following as permanent members India,
Japan, Brazil, Germany and two African countries.
RICE

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