Venezuela, Cuba slam American foreign policy

September 24, 2021 - 17:36

TEHRAN - Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro says his country has been the victim of a "fierce campaign" of permanent and systematic aggression through economic and financial sanctions from the United States and its allies.

Last year, U.S. sanctions were believed to have killed around 40,000 Venezuelans as the unilateral measures prevented Caracas from importing vital medical supplies, especially during a Pandemic.  

Maduro made the remarks during a speech he delivered at the annual session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. He said, "[the assembly] must be liberated from any hegemony or any empires' attempts at economic, financial, military or political domination; liberated from those who over centuries plundered, dominated, exploited and oppressed people throughout the world with their old, rapacious colonialism."

He says, "there are those who are today attempting to impose new forms of colonialism on our people, new forms of domination, looting, oppression, and exploitation of people throughout the world… That is why in this General Assembly… Venezuela is calling for a new world free from colonialism, a new world without imperialism, a new world without any dominant hegemony".

"It is a financial, monetary, commercial, economic, energy persecution. It is systematic, cruel, and criminal." Maduro said in his speech at the UN General Assembly.
The Venezuelan leader's speech had been prerecorded and came when his government was engaged in talks with the U.S.-backed opposition to try and solve the political problems in the South American country. It also follows his participation in the recent Community of Latin American and the Caribbean States summit.

Maduro stated, "Financial accounts are being chased, gold has been seized and blocked from the legal international reserves of the Central Bank of Venezuela in London, and billions of dollars in bank accounts have been seized and blocked in the United States, Europe, and more".  

According to Maduro, Venezuelan oil companies are being prevented from trading their products and open bank accounts to make commercial transactions.

"It is a financial, monetary, commercial, economic, energy persecution. It is systematic, cruel, and criminal. Venezuela raises its voice to denounce it before the peoples of the world."

Demanding the end of all sanctions against his country, Maduro said he was grateful for the support and effort of UN Member States who are working towards this goal. Maduro said that in 2021, his country had gone from a painful phase to a recovery phase, with sustained growth in science, innovation, technology, and "spiritual capacity".

"We have taken the path of recovery and integral growth for our nation. We have taken the path of deploying the productive forces of a country subjected to an infernal blockade, criminal persecution, and the cruel torture of its economic and social body. And can we say to the peoples of the world with courage, decisiveness, intelligence, and wisdom: 'Yes', we can face the imperial aggressions and move forward", he underscored.

The President added that this year has also seen Venezuela advance towards an inclusive peace dialogue and the holding of regional and local elections in November.
"We have started several dialogues with business, social, political, and union sectors. We have ratified the path of dialogue… recently we had a national peace and sovereignty dialogue on August 13", he told the Assembly.

He also announced that with the support of Mexican President Andrés Manuel Lopez Obrador and the special diplomatic aid of Norway, the Russian Federation, and the Netherlands, his country was addressing a comprehensive plan to advance in the social and economic recovery.

Maduro called for the "building of a new world", free of hegemony and based on multilateralism and international law principles. He said, "a new world that emerges from Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean, and from the native peoples of the United States of America. A new world that is reborn to end the old hegemonies, to put an end to the pretense of some to become policemen and judges of all the peoples of the world". The Venezuelan leader added that this new world requires reforms at the United Nations as well. "Venezuela stands up with its own voice for that new world."

Maduro also welcomed talks being held between the government and the opposition to resolve their differences without outside interference saying, "I am grateful for the support of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, to the Mexican dialogue process and I ask for the full support of the United Nations so that the dialogue process in Mexico advances towards new partial agreements and towards a global agreement to strengthen the peace, sovereignty and the integral prosperity of Venezuela."

The third round of this dialogue process will take place towards the end of this month. Washington has tried on multiple occasions to bring down the Venezuelan government through sanctions, military intervention, and recognizing opposition figure Guan Guido as the country's President. This is despite Guido having not contested an election in his life.

Meanwhile, the President of Cuba, Miguel Marion Diaz-Canel, has underlined the importance of multilateralism in his speech to the high-level General Debate at the General Assembly. He strongly denounced the foreign policy of the United States.

Diaz-Canel, who delivered a speech via a prerecorded video, said that the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic have rendered the United Nations even more critical. When international cooperation has been insufficient, and "neo-liberal formulas" have reduced States' capabilities to meet the needs of their populations.

Diaz-Canel also says that U.S. attacks against Cuba have "exceeded all limits, referring to the U.S. Government's maintenance of his country on a list of countries that sponsor terrorism.

The U.S., said Diaz-Canel, is projecting a false image of Cuba and has done everything to "erase the Cuban Revolution from the political map to the world". He declared that the country would continue to stand its ground.

He went on to denounce the United States' foreign policy, which, he said, is promoting a "dangerous international schism…through the pernicious use and abuse of coercive economic measures".

According to the Cuban President, the U.S. pressures countries to speak and act against adversaries overthrows legitimate governments, and breaks trade agreements. "It is a kind of behavior associated to ideological and cultural intolerance, with a remarkable racist influence and hegemonic ambition purposes", he stated.

He reiterated Cuba's commitment to peace in Colombia, an end to foreign interference in Syria, and a just solution to the conflict in West Asia. The President condemned the "unilateral [U.S.] coercive measures" imposed against Iran and the "unilateral and unjust" sanctions against North Korea and reaffirmed solidarity with the Saharan people.

He also denounced that "the most vulnerable have been left unprotected, while rich nations, the elites, and the pharmaceutical transnational corporations have continued to profit"

He also noted throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Cuba has shown solidarity with other countries, sending more than 4,900 health workers to 40 countries and territories affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. He described them as "the pride of our nation and a symbol of its vocation for justice."

Diaz-Canel suggested that an answer could be transforming what he called the "unequal and antidemocratic international order". Developed countries, he continued, are mainly responsible for the current situation and have a moral obligation to take responsibility.

He declared that the Cuban people have the right to live in peace and security, development, well-being, and social justice, adding that "a revitalized, democratized and strengthened United Nations is called to play a key role in this effort."

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