Cuba protests US 'propaganda' against Castro

Campaign News | Monday, 17 October 2005

Report to UN highlights effects of US policy

United Nations, Oct 15: Cuba accused the United States of waging "radio and television aggression" by bombarding the island with thousands of hours of propaganda every week, repeating a frequent complaint.

The Cuban representative to the United Nations' political and decolonisation committee said yesterday the US is violating Cuba's national sovereignty with an "obsessive and sick" policy of seeking to topple Fidel Castro.

The delegate said the United States beams 2,300 hours each week from 16 stations in 24 frequencies, programmes that are "totally alien to culture, scientific development and wholesome entertainment, let aside truthful and objective information," said Ambassador Rodrigo Malmierca, Cuba's representative to the committee.

"The obsessive and sick US policy to destroy the Cuban Revolution has driven them to use various technical means in its radio-electronic warfare against Cuba," Malmierca told the committee, which was discussing information.

How US Blockade of Cuba affects other countries including UK

New York, 12 October: Washington?s claims that its blockade against Cuba is a bilateral affair crumbles as nations, companies and individual businesspeople from countries other than the US face increasing hurdles in trying to do business with the island, according to a report tabled at the UN by Cuba this week.

According to the report, in 2004, about 77 companies, banks and non-governmental organizations worldwide were fined $1.2 million for actions considered by United States a violation of the blockade.

Of those entities fined, 11 are foreign enterprises or subsidiaries by US companies settled in Mexico, Canada, Panama, Italy, United Kingdom, Uruguay and Bahamas.Organizations like Iberia, Alitalia, Air Jamaica, Daewoo and the Bank of China were sanctioned because their branch offices in the US violated the embargo.

In the UK, on 2 December 2004, the hotel and travel company CENDANT CORPORATION, with head offices in the United States, bought over the company EBOOKERS, one of the UK’s largest online reservations company, which processed reservations for Cuba’s GRAN CARIBE hotel branch.

The service was discontinued on 1 January 2005 as a result of provision in the US blockade. Another US company took over two other UK online reservations companies (OCTOPUS and TRAVELBAG), limiting the number of alternatives for making reservations in Cuba even more.

Alpha Pharmaceutical Inc., ICN Farmaceutica S.A. and Laboratorios Grossman S.A. settled in Panama and Mexico received fines valued at $198,000.Other companies also affected were the Mexican Trinity Industries and Chiron Corporation Ltd., entities that in the name of Chiron S.A. and Chiron Behring GMBH, from California, had to pay $168,500 for exporting vaccines to Cuba from 1999 to 2002.

Likewise, Daewoo Heavy Industries America Corporation, with headquarters in Georgia, United states, was fined with $55,000 for exporting goods to Cuba in 1999.

This year, the company Martinair Holland, based in Netherlands, was also fined for traveling to Cuba without a US license.Regulations of the economic, trade and financial war against the Caribbean island forbid US companies settled in other countries to carry out any transaction with Cuban enterprises.

Third-country companies are also impeded from exporting US any product with Cuban raw materials.Furthermore, Washington prohibits Havana from selling goods or services with US technology or those manufactured in that northern nation, even when owners of those companies are from other countries.

To oblige other countries to be part of the blockade, the US government impedes the entrance of ships that have transported goods to or from Cuba, as well as prohibits foreign banks from opening accounts in US dollars or making financial transactions in that currency with Cuban people or legal entities.

The document “The Need to End the US Economic, Trade and Financial Blockade of Cuba” was presented for the fourteenth time at the UN General Assembly on October 12. A year ago, 179 countries voted for Cuba’s resolution to end the blockade with four against and one abstention.

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