Cuba and the US can Work Together despite Big Differences

HAVANA, Cuba, Jan 22 (acn) The delegations of Cuba and the United States agreed that the round of talks for the process of restoration of diplomatic relations, held today at the International Conference Center, is an important step on the road to the decision announced by Presidents Barack Obama and Raúl Castro last December 17.

Josefina Vidal, director general of the US Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, head of the Cuban delegation, told reporters that the dialogue was held in a “respectful, professional and constructive” climate, while the head of the US delegation, Roberta Jacobson, called it “positive and productive”.

The Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs said in a brief statement that they had discussed in concrete and real terms the measures to be taken to restore diplomatic relations and the opening of embassies.

Jacobson added that actions have been taken to implement the commitments of the President of the United States relating to this subject, and acknowledged it will be a very long process, because it is not limited to the restoration of diplomatic relations and the opening of embassies in each country, and she said that “today we have taken new steps in this direction.”

Both diplomatic agreed that this process must be guided by the principles of international Conventions on Diplomatic and Consular Relations.

Vidal said the Cuban side reiterated the readiness of the Government of Cuba to continue to hold a respectful dialogue, based on sovereign equality and reciprocity, without prejudice to national independence and self-determination of peoples.

She also said it would be difficult to explain how they are going to restore diplomatic relations if the US doesn’t remove Cuba from the list of countries that sponsor terrorism, and voiced her concern for the lack of a bank the Cuban interest section in Washington has had for over a year to conduct its business.

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