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Statement by Ambassador Wang Min, Deputy Permanent Representative of the People's Republic of China at the 67th Session of the UN General Assembly on Agenda Item 41 "Necessity of ending the economic, commercial and financial embargo imposed by the United States of America against Cuba"

2012/11/13

Mr. President,

Let me begin by welcoming the report submitted by the Secretary General under this agenda item. The Chinese delegation associates itself with the statement made by Algeria on behalf of G77 and China.

For 20 consecutive years, the United Nations General Assembly has adopted, by an overwhelming majority, resolutions on the "necessity of ending the economic, commercial and financial embargo imposed by the United States of America against Cuba", urging all the countries to abide by the UN Charter and international law, repeal or invalidate any laws and measures with extraterritorial effects which affect the sovereignty of other states, the legitimate interests of entities or persons under their jurisdiction and the freedom of trade and navigation.

Regrettably, however, those resolutions have not been effectively implemented over the years, and the economic, commercial and financial embargo against Cuba imposed by the United States is yet to be lifted. Such practice has inflicted enormous economic and financial losses on Cuba. According to statistics, Cuba's economic losses directly resulting from the embargo had exceeded 108 billion US Dollars by December 2011. Taking into account the depreciation of the US dollar against the price of gold in the international market, the figure would increase to 1.066 trillion dollars. The embargo has caused shortage of commodities and dealt a heavy blow to Cuba's economy. It stands as the major stumbling block for Cuba's economic development and social progress. Besides, such embargo has brought huge sufferings to the Cuban people and violated their fundamental human rights including the rights to food, health and education as well as their rights to survival and development.

We have noted that one of the most prominent features of the embargo in the last year has been interference with Cuba's international financial transactions. This has not only hit Cuba's economy hard, but also affected the normal economic, commercial and financial interactions between other countries and Cuba and hence impairing the interests and sovereignty of third countries.

The embargo against Cuba severely violated the purposes and principles of the UN Charter and the relevant UNGA resolutions and has met the firm opposition of the vast majority of member states. The call of the international community is getting louder and louder, demanding that the US government change its policy towards Cuba, lift embargo and normalize its relations with Cuba. Such calling is fully reflected in this year's Secretary-General's report.

Mr. President,

The Chinese government has always believed that countries should develop mutual relations on the basis of upholding the purposes and principles of the UN Charter and respecting the rights of other countries to independently choose their own social system and development path. China is opposed to any unilateral sanctions against other countries by military, political, economic or other means. Meanwhile, China has strictly followed and implemented the relevant GA resolutions. China and Cuba have maintained normal economic, trade and personnel exchanges. The friendly and mutually-beneficial cooperation in various fields between our two countries has been growing. This is not only in line with the desire of the two peoples, but also conducive to the economic and social development of Cuba.

In today's world, dialogue, exchanges and harmonious coexistence represent the mainstream of international relations. Exchanges and cooperation on an equal footing among countries have become the dominating trend. In the face of differences, dialogue on an equal footing and friendly consultation are the best means to settle disputes. China hopes that the US will follow the purposes and principles of the UN Charter and the relevant GA resolutions and terminate its embargo against Cuba as soon as possible. China also hopes that the relationship between the US and Cuba will constantly improve so as to promote the stability and development in Latin America and the Caribbean region. China will again vote in favor of the draft resolution submitted by Cuba under this agenda item.

Thank you, Mr. President.

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