74 UNGA: Statement by Cuba, on Agenda Item 70: Promotion and protection of human rights. New York, 21 October 2019.

Mr. Chairman,

Cuba reaffirms its commitment to continue promoting international cooperation in terms of human rights. We defend the principles of mutual respect, truth, justice, universality, impartiality and non-selectivity as the only way to promote and protect all human rights.

Higher priority and visibility should be granted to solving problems such as extreme poverty, illiteracy, lack of access to basic rights such as health, education and food, among others, which characterize the unjust international economic order.

Cuba is opposed to selective approaches and initiatives against developing countries, particularly those driven by political motivations and hegemonic interests of certain powers, undermining cooperation in terms of human rights.

Cuba is against the certification of countries through unilateral lists such as those published by the United States on alleged violations of human rights. These practices are contrary to international law and the Charter of the United Nations and only seek to justify acts of aggression and unilateral coercive measures against developing countries.

We believe that the Universal Periodic Review mechanism of the Human Rights Council is the appropriate instrument to address the human rights situation in all countries without distinction or politicization.

Mr. Chairman,

Cuba's outstanding accomplishments in terms of human rights disprove any manipulation against my country. The statement delivered by the delegation of the United States of America is an example of an arrogant and confrontational approach that in no way contributes to promoting and protecting human rights. It shows the ramifications of the lies emanating from the current administration.

The pattern of systematic violations of all human rights by the United States of America deprives it of the least moral to give any lesson on human rights.

Said country has shaken the world with wars of aggression and conquest, secret prisons and flights, kidnappings of human beings, extrajudicial executions using drones; it implements the policy of separating migrant children from their parents, locking them in cages as if they were animals, and delivers hateful, xenophobic and racist speeches that have caused massacres such as the one in Texas. This string of horrors also includes the use of torture, arbitrary detention and deprivation of liberty, as is the case of the Guantánamo Naval Base, an illegally occupied territory to our people; the murders of African-Americans by the police; the death of thousands of civilians by their intervention and occupation troops; and the use of unilateral coercive measures.

The United States of America is the world's main violator of human rights.

 Mr. Chairman,

While inequality, the opulence of a few and the marginalization of many prevail in the world, the Cuban people continue their struggle to achieve the most just society possible.

We strongly condemn aggressions of all sorts including the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the Government of the United States of America against Cuba for almost 60 years. The blockade is the major violation of the human rights of all Cubans and an act contrary to the spirit and letter of the Charter of the United Nations and international law.

I conclude by reiterating that the effective realization of all human rights, respect for cultural diversity, different religions and beliefs, the diversity of political, economic and social systems, and the right to self-determination of peoples should be the cornerstone of our actions.

Thank you very much.