ACN: Cuban Diplomat Josefina Vidal Presented with LASA Award
Sun May 29, 2016 9:55 am (PDT) . Posted by:
“Walter Lippmann” walterlx
Cuban Diplomat Josefina Vidal Presented with LASA Award
HAVANA, Cuba, May 29 (acn) The 34th Congress of the Latin
American Studies Association (LASA) granted Josefina Vidal,
director general of the United States Department of the Cuban
Foreign Ministry, the prize given by the organization.
Vidal received in New York the LASA Award for her contribution to
the new scenario of relations between Cuba and the U.S., reported
the Cuban television newscast.
Upon receiving the acknowledgement, she said she extended it to
the Cuban people and the leaders of the Revolution who have
managed to lead, with intelligence and in an accurate way, the
process of dialogue with the northern country.
The Cuban diplomat, while speaking at the second session of the
Congress of LASA, reiterated the willingness of the island to
promote better relations with the United States, a scenario that
she said goes through changes to leave behind the traditional
hostility of Washington, translated into policies such as the
blockade and subversive programs.
In the four-day forum that started on Friday, the top official
reviewed the achievements and challenges of relationships since
December 17, 2014, when presidents Raul Castro and Barack Obama
announced the decision to seek the normalization of ties, Prensa
In the presence of dozens of academicians, intellectuals and
scholars of Latin America and the Cuban-American scenario, she
recalled the full validity of the economic, commercial and
financial blockade imposed by Washington on Cuba for over half a
century now and the occupation of territory at the Naval Base of
She also mentioned the preferential immigration policy for Cuban
citizens, programs aimed at promoting internal changes and the
illegal radio and television broadcasts.
Vidal highlighted the removal of Cuba from the unilateral list of
countries sponsoring terrorism, the resumption of diplomatic
relations, the reopening of embassies in Havana and Washington
DC, the high-level visits and the signing of cooperation
agreements in areas of mutual interest.
Likewise, she also highlighted the three meetings held between
Raul Castro and Obama, and the U.S. president’s trip to the
island in March, which she considered a boost to the process of
For the board of directors of the Foreign Ministry these are
steps forward in the cooperation and political-diplomatic areas,
the fruit of professional conversations, based on equality and
We have also had the first results in the economic and commercial
sector, however, they are not of the same magnitude of those
mentioned, she warned at the meeting of the second day of the
34th Congress of LASA.
She specified that results are not as significant due to the full
implementation of the blockade, a complex web of laws and
measures that impose restrictions on Cuba for its exports and
imports, and almost totally ban U.S. investments on the island.
The top official acknowledged the four packages of executive
actions established by Obama to modify the implementation of some
aspects of the economic, commercial and financial siege.
In that regard, she stressed that they are insufficient to
promote trade links, among other things, because it has not been
possible to normalize an essential banking relationship.
What has been achieved is not irrelevant, but we must do much
more to advance towards normalization. These are the first steps
of what in the future could be a new stage of relations between
Cuba and the United States, she asserted at the Congress of LASA,
which celebrates its 50 years of existence.