Cuba and the U.S. to Weigh Up Progress in 4th Meeting of Bilateral Commission

Havana, Cuba, Sep 29.-Three new agreements in health, aeronautics, and the fight against drug trafficking; eight visits of high level and 12 technical meetings, are some of the achievements in relations between Cuba and United States, summarized in this capital Gustavo Machin, General Deputy Director for the U.S. of the Cuban Foreign Ministry.

In a press conference, he said that in the 4th meeting of the Bilateral Commission that will take place in Washington on Friday, September 30, the state of bonds will be assessed, with significant progress in the diplomatic sphere and cooperation, but not in the economic and commercial ones.

As usual, Josefina Vidal, General Director for the U.S. of the Cuban Foreign Ministry, will head the island’s delegation to the meeting, while the U.S. party will be headed by Mari Carmen Aponte and Jonathan Finer, Assistant Secretary of State for Hemispheric Affairs and Director of Policy Planning of the State Department, respectively.

According to the official of the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Havana and Washington will agree the next steps in the road toward the normalization of relations and the high level visits and technical meetings that will take place, and will work on new agreements for the benefit of the two parties, while talks on topics of bilateral and multilateral interest are expected.

The General Deputy Director said that Cuba won’t interfere in the U.S. presidential elections, but hopes that the next President is consequent with the desire and opinion of wide sectors of society supporting the lifting of the blockade and the improvement of relations.

On the nomination of Jeffrey De Laurentis, current charge d’affaires of United States to Havana as ambassador of that country to the Cuban capital, he said it is a consequent decision by President Barack Obama and welcomed that that mission can have a representation at the maximum level possible.

Since Cuba and United States reestablished diplomatic relations on July 20, 2015, 12 agreements have been signed between the two nations, referred to the environment, postal mail service, direct regular flights, security in marine navigation, agriculture and security for travelers, trade and telecommunications.

Cuba will reiterate at the 4th meeting of the Bilateral Commission the necessity to lift the blockade, to return to Cuba the illegally occupied territory in Guantanamo by the Naval Base, and to eliminate other policies that are detrimental to Cuban sovereignty. (acn)

Radio Cadena Agramonte, September 29, 2016

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