Díaz Canel’s government maintains that the United States has pressured Bolivia to “impose the deterioration of relations with Cuba.” On Friday, Bolivia decided to “suspend” relations with the island due to the accusations made by the Cuban foreign minister against President Jeanine Áñez and her government.
3 months ago – El Deber
Cuba rejected on Saturday “the pretexts” of Bolivia to suspend diplomatic relations with the island and said that this decision responds to “pressure” from the United States. “Cuba categorically rejects the unfounded accusations” and “pretexts from the coup authorities in Bolivia to suspend diplomatic relations,” said a statement by its Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The text denounced that the Bolivian “de facto government” carried out “a fierce campaign of lies and misrepresentations against Cuba, in particular against Cuban medical cooperation” in that country, with the aim of “deteriorating and hindering bilateral relations.” Likewise, “from the very beginning of the coup, US government officials applied pressure in Bolivia to impose the deterioration of relations with Cuba, persecute Cuban doctors, harass diplomats and abort medical cooperation,” added the Cuban Foreign Ministry. In fact, he remarked, “the day of the announcement (of the suspension of diplomatic relations) that Washington is pleased with, the acting foreign minister (Bolivian, Karen Longaric) was precisely in the offices of the State Department.”
When suspending relations on Friday, the Bolivian Minister of the Presidency, Yerko Núñez, explained that he responded to “inadmissible expressions” of the Cuban foreign minister, Bruno Rodríguez, who called the right-wing president, Jeanine Áñez, a “self-proclaimed coup leader” on Wednesday and “the permanent hostility and constant grievances of Cuba against the Bolivian Constitutional Government and its democratic process.” The Cuban Foreign Ministry stressed that “the Bolivian coup authorities should not place responsibility on Cuba for their decision to suspend diplomatic relations between the two countries,” because “hostility and offenses have not emanated from our government or our people.” “Cuba has acted with patience and prudence, in defense and protection of its nationals and has avoided confrontation despite the reprehensible actions of the coup leaders,” he concluded.
Statements by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cuba, Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla:
As the Ministry of Foreign Affairs timely informed, around 2 o’clock today, that is, in the early hours in the morning of today, Thursday, April 30, 2020, a terrorist attack was perpetrated against the embassy of the Republic of Cuba to the United States in Washington. An unidentified individual shot at the building of the Cuban embassy in the US using an assault rifle. None of the members of the staff of the mission was injured, who is safe and protected, but some material damages were caused to the building as a result of the numerous gunshots. Cuba’s diplomatic mission in Washington has a security and protection system in place against any threat that may jeopardize the diplomatic officials, their relatives and the facilities. The individual, whose identity has not been reported to the Cuban government, was arrested by the local authorities and remains under their custody. We appreciate the professional behavior of the law enforcement agency officers who very quickly arrived at the scene of the incident.
Today, at noon time, I summoned the Charge d’ Affairs of the US embassy in Havana, Mrs. Mara Tekach, to discuss this serious incident. I stated our strongest protest for the grave terrorist attack perpetrated against the Cuban embassy. I asked her: How would the US government react to such an attack against any of its embassies? I remember the unfair actions and threats made by the US Government without a minimal explanation or evidence on the so called “acoustic attacks” supposedly against American diplomats. It is the obligation of all States to take all appropriate steps to protect the premises of a diplomatic mission accredited to that country against any intrusion or damage and to prevent any disturbance of the peace of the mission or impairment of its dignity or its normal functioning, as established by the Vienna Convention about Diplomatic Relations of 1961. I demanded utmost cooperation from the US government authorities to clarify the facts and the assurances that such incidents will not happen again or remain unpunished, including this incident that has just occurred.
This attack against the Cuban embassy in the United States has in any case been encouraged by the increasingly hostile rhetoric against our country that has both publicly and systematically involved the US Secretary of State as well as high officials of that Department in charge of relations with the Western Hemisphere, and even the US embassy in Havana. It is impossible not to establish a connection between such actions and the strengthening of the aggressive and hostile policy that the US applies against Cuba, or the tightening of the blockade, which includes non-conventional measures even in times of the COVID-19 pandemic, which affects the whole planet. The acts to instigate violence against the Cuban medical personnel in third countries, as was the case recently in Bolivia, even with the participation of US officials; the slanders and demonization of the health staff, also encourage violent actions.
At the moment of the attack, as I expressed to the US diplomat, there were ten Cuban officials and diplomats inside the building, who were in grave danger. It is likewise impossible to separate this type of action from the effect of policies and speeches of hatred that promote division and social violence. There have been serious historical antecedents of violent and hostile actions, including terrorist actions, against Cuban diplomatic officials assigned to the United States, both at the Washington mission and at the Cuban Permanent Representation to the United Nations in New York. I also remembered that several groups and individuals have operated for many years and are still operating inside the US territory with impunity, who have in the past committed terrorist actions against Cuba, something that is well-known by the law enforcement agencies of the government of the United States. I am surprised to see that more than 15 hours have elapsed from the attack against our embassy and neither the official US government authorities or the State Department have contacted our authorities; there has not been any official statement, not even tweets, which are so frequent when referring to Cuba, from any US official or its embassy. I urge the State Department to adopt, with the utmost urgency, the measures necessary to ensure full compliance with the responsibilities it is entitled to under the Vienna Convention and ensure the security and safety of the Cuban embassy, the Cuban Permanent Mission to the United Nations, and the staff that works at both missions and the relatives accompanying them. Finally, I offer the cooperation of the Cuban authorities to carry out the appropriate investigation.
Thank you, very much.
May 8, 2020