UN body criticizes US broadcasts to Cuba

Campaign News | Thursday, 15 November 2007

Geneva, Nov 14 (EFE).- Delegates to the World Radiocommunication Conference 2007 declared illegal the U.S. government's use of airplanes to beam the signals of Washington-funded Television Marti into Cuba over the objections of the island's communist government, Cuban diplomats said here Wednesday.

The conference, which is organized by the U.N. International Telecommunications Union, approved a series of conclusions ratifying some of Havana's complaints about the actions of the U.S. Office of Cuba Broadcasting, the Cuban mission in Geneva said in a statement.

"A radio broadcasting station that functions on board an aircraft and transmits only to the territory of another administration without its agreement cannot be considered in conformity with the radio communications regulations," said the conclusions provided by the Cuban Embassy.

Radio and Television Marti was created through the U.S. Radio Broadcasting to Cuba Act of 1983 during the presidency of Ronald Reagan, and Radio Marti began to transmit in May 1985 from Washington.

The radio and television signals are beamed to Cuba six days a week from an aircraft, the annual cost of which is said to be $5.9 million, paid for by the U.S. government.

After the adoption of the conclusions at the plenary session, the U.S. delegation opposed it and, according to the Cuban mission, said that Washington will continue "with its policy of transmissions to Cuba," much as the Bush administration vows to continue the 45-year-old economic embargo against Havana despite repeated calls from the U.N. General Assembly to end the sanctions. EFE

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