Wednesday, 5 November 2008
Dáil Eireann Debate
147. Deputy Ciarán Lynch asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs if he will make a statement on the recent vote at the General Assembly of the United Nations which condemned the illegal blockade of Cuba; and the position of Ireland and the EU in this regard. [38370/08]
Minister for Foreign Affairs (Deputy Micheál Martin): Ireland and its EU partners believe that the United States trade policy towards Cuba is fundamentally a bilateral issue. However, the EU cannot accept that unilateral measures imposed by the US on specific countries limit the Union’s economic and commercial relations with third countries, in this case Cuba. Furthermore, the EU rejects all unilateral measures against Cuba which are contrary to commonly accept rules of international trade, and believes that the lifting of the US trade embargo would open Cuba’s economy to the benefit of the Cuban people.
For these reasons, and in spite of concerns regarding Cuba’s human rights record, as in previous years Ireland and our EU partners therefore voted on 30 October 2008 in favour of the annual Cuban-tabled UN General Assembly resolution calling for an end to this embargo.
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