Politicians and academicians from Cuba, the United States and Europe agreed on the importance of ending the blockade against the island to advance in the process of normalization of Cuban-American relations.
Opening the meeting called “Dialogue on Cuba: the role of the European Union and Spain,” Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, former President of the Spanish government, considered fair, necessary and appropriate the end of that policy.
As President Barack Obama said, the United States should be recognized and appreciated in the world, not only for its great military power and conquests, but also for its great values and the ideas of the founding fathers, Zapatero said.
The former president of the Spanish government also recognized the island’s support to end the violence in his country, marking today four years that the Basque separatist organization, ETA, ended its armed actions.
Terrorism came to an end four years ago, good time to remember the wisdom that the United States removed Cuba from the list of countries supporting terrorism. Cuba helped my government, Spain, to make true the end of violence, he stressed.
Cuban ambassador here, Eugenio Martinez, said, meanwhile, that the new stage confirms that Cuba and the United States can find a modus vivendi based on respect to the sovereign equality and international law.
We know that President Obama has taken steps in the right direction and has sufficient prerogatives to give others who can deprive from the most extensive system of territorial sanctions ever applied against a people, the diplomat said.
At the same time, he said Cuba “will never apologize for defending our sin of being a free and independent people as it is and develop us as we want.”
Speaking at the opening of the meeting organized by the Institute for the Cultural Diplomacy, presided over by Zapatero, Kris Urs, counselor of the U.S. embassy, also defended the need to end the blockade, for which his president already addressed the Congress of his country.