The Mast, 1st June 2021. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cuba rejects, in the strongest possible terms, the US State Department’s certification of Cuba as country that is not cooperating fully with the United States counterterrorism efforts, published by the Federal Register of that country on May 25, 2021.
The administration of Donald Trump had issued that same certification on June 2, 2020 as a prior step to Cuba’s inclusion in the US State Department list of States that allegedly sponsor international terrorism which was published on January 11, 2021, a few days before the inauguration of President Joseph Biden, with the clear purpose of conditioning his behavior towards our country.
It is about an absolutely unfounded accusation used to pursue political purposes, intended to justify the attacks against Cuba, including the inhumane economic, commercial and financial blockade that is being suffered by our people.
The Ministry likewise rejects the US unilateral and selective practice of singling out countries in arbitrary lists with regards to terrorism, which is void of any legitimacy and contrary to International Law and the UN Charter.
Our country has been a victim of 713 terrorist actions, most of them organized, funded and perpetrated by the government of the United States or by individuals and organizations that are provided with safe heaven or operate with impunity in that country. Such actions have taken a toll on the lives of 3 478 persons and caused disabilities to 2 099 Cuban citizens. Human and economic damages have been estimated at 181 billion dollars.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs recalls the several actions perpetrated against Cuban staff and representative offices abroad, among them, the one carried out on April 30, 2020, when our embassy in Washington D.C. was the target of a machine-gun attack that endangered the lives and safety of the members of the diplomatic mission. The US government has not yet publicly recognized the terrorist character of that attack.
Cuba’s Constitution rejects and condemns terrorism in any of its forms or manifestations. Cuba has maintained a transparent and impeccable behavior in the struggle against terrorism and has expressed its willingness to cooperate with the US authorities as much as it does with other countries. This is something that the US government knows only too well. There is concrete evidence of that willingness, in the context of bilateral instruments in force under International Law. Cuba upholds its commitment to the Peace Process in Colombia, despite being a victim of repeated politically-motivated unfriendly and dishonest actions.
The administration of President Joseph Biden has publicly stated that even though Cuba is not considered a high priority issue, the US policy towards our country is currently under review.
If Cuba is not a priority, and the aforementioned review has not concluded, then how could the State Department explain the unfounded and mendacious singling out of our country in relation to the terrorism issue? How could it justify that the 243 unilateral coercive measures adopted by the Trump administration, which include an increased financial persecution and other extraterritorial measures, have continued to be implemented?
The Secretary of State should confess that the US authorities have been the ones which have refused to cooperate with Cuba in the combat of terrorism, something that is duly documented. The US government has never returned to Cuba any single fugitive of the Cuban justice; it has not even prosecuted any of them for the crimes and terrorist actions committed against our people and citizens from other countries.
Cuba’s inclusion in the list of countries “not fully cooperating” with the US counterterrorism efforts is an irresponsible and shameful action.
Cuba will not alter its commitment to peace and will persist in its efforts in the struggle against terrorism.
Havana, May 27, 2021.