75 UNGA: Statement by the Cuban delegation at the Interactive Dialogue with the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. Third Committee. New York, 14 October 2020

Madam Chair,

My delegation appreciates the opportunity to exchange views with the High Commissioner; and notes the presentation of report A/75/36. 

We reiterate our support for her work and Office, based on UNGA resolution 48/141, which underlined the need for promotion and protection of all human rights to be guided by the principles of impartiality, objectivity and non-selectivity, in a spirit of dialogue and cooperation.

We note with concern that punitive approaches, selective practices and double standards are imposed on countries of the South. The limited resources of the Office should not be devoted to promote or support these practices.

The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed the inequalities caused by the current international order. Although all countries have been affected by the pandemic, it will be the South which will bear the highest costs.

The pandemic has also highlighted the lack of real political will of the most powerful and richest country. Instead of joining collective efforts, the government of the United States politicizes COVID-19, withdraws from the WHO and favors unilateralism.

The United States has taken advantage of the pandemic to reinforce the imposition of unilateral coercive measures, which have an undeniable and very negative impact on human rights.

The United States tightens the economic, commercial and financial blockade against Cuba, which shows its criminal nature. In doing so, it hinders my country´s access to products necessary to guarantee health and provision of other basic services to the people. It also prevents its own citizens to access Cuban medical products and expertise in the fight against epidemics, which have saved thousands of lives all over the world.

In this regard, we appreciate the statement delivered by the High Commissioner on 23 March, on the need to lift sanctions in the context of the pandemic. We would like to ask her what impact she considers her statement had, and what other actions her Office can or plans to take on this matter, on which it depends that millions of people can enjoy greater wellbeing and better exercise all their rights.

Thank you.