Cuban President Raul Castro said today that the process of re-establishing ties with the United States is going well, but we are setting ”our own pace”.
Castro said that US President Barack Obama has the executive power to submit to the Congress – as he already did- the order to exclude Cuba from the State Sponsors of Terrorism List.
The deadline to deal with that matter is met in a few days, said Castro referring to Obama’s decision to exclude Cuba from the list, and announced that then they will move on to appoint each country ambassadors.
He said that the two countries are also discussing the movement restrictions of US diplomats in Cuba, similar to those applied to the Cuban embassies in Washington and the United Nations.
Castro reiterated that one thing will be restorating diplomatic relations, opening embassies and appointing ambassadors; and quite another fully normalizing relations.
The latter will be possible in the first instance by completely eliminating the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed against Cuba for over five decades, he said.
Similarly, he reaffirmed Cuba’s claim over the Guantanamo Bay -an island territory illegally occupied by the United States- in order to move towards the normalization of ties.
Talking about the future of relations between the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and the European Union (EU), he told Prensa Latina that a summit between both organizations will take place in Brussels on June 11 and 12.
The Cuban President also expressed his views on the so-called European Common Position, an interventionist policy implemented in 1996 by the then Spanish President, Jose Maria Aznar, limiting EU relations with Cuba.
“That common position should have never existed”, said the Cuban President and expressed his confidence that this issue will be resolved.