Dr. Filimon Manoni, Deputy Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF), thanked Cuba for its solidarity, especially during the confrontation with Covid-19 and its willingness to cooperate with the region.
Manoni expressed his gratitude for the Cuban solidarity when he received Carlos Manuel Rojas, Cuba´s Ambassador in Fiji, at the headquarters of that organization.
The meeting allowed them to review existing potential to strengthen political dialogue and multifaceted ties between both parties, considering that the Caribbean nation holds the status of PIF Dialogue Partner, according to the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The PIF senior official described as very fruitful the exchange of experiences in the confrontation with the pandemic that took place between Cuban experts and his colleagues from the Pacific, while praising Cuba´s willingness to provide medical assistance to the countries in the region in this difficult situation, specifically Palau.
He also expressed that young people trained as doctors in Cuba have made a valuable contribution to the improvement of health care in the Pacific.
Manoni highlighted the need to intensify exchanges in the area of confronting climate change, protection of the oceans and marine ecosystems, given the shared condition of Small Island States and with view to the next Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Meanwhile, the highest Cuban diplomatic representative in that nation recognized the effective leadership of the PIF Secretariat in the management of the Pacific Humanitarian Corridor to face COVID-19.
He referred to the context in which Cuba has had to face the pandemic, marked by the resurgence of the illegal and cruel policy of economic and financial blockade imposed by the United States, and that, despite this, the country has its own vaccine candidate in the clinical trial phase.
The Cuban ambassador reiterated the possibilities of expanding cooperation projects with the Pacific Islands on issues of common interest such as biotechnology, treatment of chronic non-communicable diseases, confronting the deterioration of the climate, disaster risk management, sustainable agriculture and sports.