Mexico, Oct 17 (Prensa Latina) President of Cuba Miguel Diaz-Canel arrived here today to begin a state visit to Mexico, a country with which the island has maintained uninterrupted diplomatic relations for 117 years.
Diaz-Canel will be received at the National Palace this afternoon by his Mexican counterpart, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who anticipated that the meeting will serve to endorse his commitment to respect the people of Cuba, their independence and their right to self-determination.
In general we will talk about the possibility of developing a program in the short or medium term. There is nothing precise, but there will be cooperation, the host stated at his usual morning press conference.
The Cuban President traveled to this capital last December to attend the inauguration of President Lopez Obrador, whose historic victory is seen as an opportunity to strengthen historical, cultural and friendship ties, and to expand bilateral relations.
In mid-May, Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez undertook a working visit to Mexico, and during a meeting with his counterpart, Marcelo Ebrard, both ratified the will to take advantage of the opportunities offered by the positive state of bilateral relations.
The diplomat heads of Cuba and Mexico committed themselves on the occasion to work to consolidate these ties, especially in economic-commercial and migration matters.
They also exchanged on issues of mutual interest in the regional and international spheres, and agreed to preserve the principles endorsed in the Proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace.
The presence of Diaz-Canel here testifies to the fact that Cubans do not forget the historic support received from Mexico, when in the first years of the Revolution it was the only country in the region that did not break off relations and also rejected attempts to isolate Cuba by the United States government.
Cuba has expressed its willingness to contribute modestly in areas of mutual benefit and interest to the development and renewal of Mexico, promoted by the government of President Lopez Obrador.
Both countries have a strengthened a legal framework which will increase exchanges in sectors such as health, education, sports, tourism, culture and biotechnology, and there are conditions to further strengthen economic-commercial links. Currently, Mexico is the second largest trading partner of Cuba in Latin America and the Caribbean, and the fifth internationally. It is also the leading issuer of tourists to the island in the region, and the eighth in the world.
Host in 2008 of the Unity Summit (2008), in which the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) was born, Mexico constitutes an important regional political actor that, like Cuba, defends the principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations.
The two nations firmly defend fundamentals such as non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries; the legal equality of States; and respect for the sovereignty and self-determination of peoples.