Havana, Mar 22 (Prensa Latina) President of the United States, Barack Obama, today praised the Cuban internationalist doctors, who assist, in solidarity, disadvantaged population segments in dozens of countries around the world.
We have to recognize the relief that Cuban doctors provide to thousands of poor in the world, to those suffering, Obama said in a speech to representatives of various organizations of Cuban civil society, in the Gran Teatro de La Habana Alicia Alonso.
In addition to the recognition of the doctors, the result of a system of universal free public health, the president celebrated the Cuban talent, which in his words is derived from the educational system, similar to the health sector, ‘that values all boys and girls’.
Previously, the president welcomed the innovative and creative capacity of the Cuban people, which, as he said, is recognized and admired in the United States.
This, said the president, who is the first from his country to visit the island in 88 years, prompted the decision of his administration to change the policy of isolation in which Washington has plunged Havana for over half a century.
This and the recognition that such policy, in which the economic, commercial and financial blockade is an important part that still persists despite flexibility measures adopted by his government, is not functional to US interests and do not reflect the historical and cultural ties that unite both countries.
Cold War policies make no sense in the twenty-first century, he stressed, while urging Cuban and U.S. citizens not to fear changes, but welcome them and help promote a civilized coexistence.
Obama’s speech to civil society, witnessed by Cuban President Raul Castro and other authorities of the island, is one of the latest activities of his official three-day visit, which ends in the afternoon and is described as historical as it is the first by a head of the White House to Cuba in 88 years.
The stay and the program he fulfilled, which concludes with his attendance to a baseball game between the Cuban national team and the team of Major League Tampa Bay Rays, reaffirm the common will of the two nations to pursue a joint path towards normalization of bilateral links.
This process began in December 2014, when Obama and Raul Castro announced the decision to initiate a process towards restoring diplomatic relations and subsequent normalization.