Huge House of Commons meeting on Cuba
Campaign News | Tuesday, 7 March 2006
200 people pack meeting to hear Cuban minister speak
<img src="images/EumilioCaballeroRodriguez.jpg" alt="Eumilio Caballero Rodriguez" width="175" height="226" hspace="10" vspace="5" align="right" />London, March 7: Around 200 people filled Committee Room 10 of the House of Commons tonight to hear the Cuban deputy foreign minister Eumelio Caballero Rodriguez speak on the question of the UK's and Europe's relations with his country.
Around 50 more people were unable to get in the meeting showing the depth of feeling in Britain towards the question of Cuba's, and indeed Venezuela's, sovereignty and US aggression.
The minister, who is on the start of a tour of Europe and Asia, said he was
heartened and optimistic by his visit and the results of a meeting that he
had held with his British counterpart Lord Triesman.
He was also very grateful on behalf of his government and people for the work that is being done in solidarity with Cuba in Britain by the CSC and the All Party Cuba group of MPs, but warned that as June approached the work of the campaign was even more decisive as it is then when the EU's policy on Cuba is up for review.
Colin Burgon, MP for Elmet in Yorkshire, spoke about his campaign to elicit from the Foreign Office the contents of a meeting that the so-called US 'Cuba Transtition Coordinator' Caleb McCarry had with FCO officials in November.
For CSC, Dr. Francisco Dominguez of Middlesex University, told the meeting that the main objective of the cmapign presently was to press for the contents of that meeting to be revealed and the extent of discussions held between our government and the Commission for a Transition to a Free Cuba.
<img src="images/HoCmeeting.jpg" alt="House of Commons Meeting" width="345" height="209" hspace="10" vspace="5" align="left" />
"We have the Freedom of Information Act and we will use it if we have to," he said, "If there is nothing to hide, they should not be afraid to tell us what they said to Mr McCarry."
CSC has been campaigning hard on this issue making it clear to the British Government that there is no compatability between the stated UK policy of 'constructive engagement' and the dangerous US policy of interference and aggression. While the Government seems willing to privately state that there is no change to UK Cuba policy in the run up to the reveiew in June the FCO must make their position clear publicly to assuage the fear that the UK is being dragged into a disastrous US led policy of aggression towards the island.
URGENT PUBLIC MEETING ON CUBA
House of Commons, Committee Room 10
Tuesday 7 March, 7pm, (enter via St Stephen’s gate)
Is UK policy on Cuba being determined by Washington?
Why did Tony Blair publicly attack Venezuela and Cuba ?
H.E Eumelio Caballero Rodréguez, Deputy Foreign Minister, Cuba
Dr Ian Gibson MP, Chair APPG on Cuba
Colin Burgon, MP
Dr Francisco Dominguez, University of Middlesex
In 2004 the United States published a 450 page report by the 'Commission for Assistance to a Free Cuba'. This report is a blueprint for intervention, aggression and the eventual occupation of Cuba. In November 2005, Caleb McCarry, the Bush Administration’s ominously named 'Cuba Transition Coordinator' visited Europe to lobby EU Governments and promote US policy towards the Island. He was officially received by our own Foreign Office. The content and extent of these discussions are now the subject of intense scrutiny, yet despite repeated requests, the FCO and Government Ministers have gone to great lengths to avoid disclosing the content of the discussions.
These secretive discussions do nothing but raise the fear that the UK is once again being drawn down a road that will only lead to aggression and intervention with disastrous consequences. With the European Common position on Cuba under review in June, this meeting is part of an urgent campaign to distance UK foreign policy from the aggressive dangerous stance of the US.
For more details contact the Cuba Solidarity Campaign
on 020 7263 6452 or firstname.lastname@example.org