Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel used his address at the UN General Assembly to lash out at the US after the American president said that Cuba is one of the world’s most authoritarian countries.
"For more than 60 years the US government has not ceased for a minute in its attacks against Cuba, but in this crucial and challenging moment for all nations its aggressiveness exceeds the limits," Diaz-Canel said in a video message recorded in Havana that was released to the world body.
The Cuban leader criticized the US for not having lifted a trade embargo and said Washington’s current Democratic administration has “maintained the coercive measures adopted by the administration of Donald Trump,” including the inclusion of Cuba on the list of countries that sponsor terrorism.
“The most cruel and longest economic, commercial and financial blockade which has ever been imposed on any country has intensified in the midst of the pandemic,” he said.
Joe Biden condemned Cuba for a crackdown on anti-government protesters and imposed new sanctions on the military and the internal security division on theisland that led attacks on demonstrators.
The US president said in July that the new measures were the first step in the American response.
“The government of that country is threatening, extorting and pressuring sovereign states to take a stand and to act against those who they identify as their adversaries,” said Diaz-Canel. "They demand that their allies build coalitions to overthrow legitimate governments.”
He also urged high-income countries to work for more equitable access to vaccines.
“The most vulnerable have remained without protection, while the richest nations, the elites and pharmaceutical transnationals are increasing their profits,” he said. “It is inconceivable that in 2020 the global military expenditure was almost $2 trillion. How many lives would have been saved if those resources had been devoted to health or production and distribution of vaccines?”
Diaz-Canel also voiced support for the governments in Venezuela, Argentina and Iran./aa