US senator highlights importance of rapprochement with Cuba

Washington, Nov 21 (Prensa Latina) US Senator Patrick Leahy has reiterated his criticism of measures adopted by the Donald Trump administration against Cuba and stressed the importance of rapprochement between the two countries.

‘I have spoken about the need for engagement with Cuba many times. It is in our national interest because our past policy of unilateral sanctions and isolation ? enforced for more than half a century ? failed to achieve any of its objectives, and because engagement with the people of other countries is the way we promote our values and protect our interests,’ the Democratic senator for Vermont stressed in a statement released on Wednesday.

Leahy noted that since Trump took office, the White House has issued constant executive orders to reverse the policy of engagement initiated under the Barack Obama administration (2009-2017), which have greatly restricted US citizens’ travel to Cuba.

He insists that there are other nations with which Washington has deep disagreements, such as Russia, China, Egypt and Turkey, ‘But no one is proposing that we prevent Americans from traveling to those countries,and if they did it would be strongly opposed by Republicans and Democrats alike.’

According to Leahy, the cause of illnesses suffered by US Embassy personnel in Cuba in yet to be determined, on ‘which there is no evidence implicating the Cuban Government despite kneejerk claims by some to the contrary.’

Cuba and the United States should be working to ‘create favorable conditions for re-staffing each other’s consular services so they can better serve the people of our two countries,’ he concluded.


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