Thursday, November 01, 2007

Diplomatic rows

Relations between the Castro regime and the current Australian Government led by prime minister John Howard have been tense for quite some time.

You know, disagreements over little issues like human right violations in Cuba and the Castro brothers' insistence in poking their noses in South Pacific affairs, which makes the Australians understandably nervous.

Still, it was a little surprising to see the following headline in this morning’s edition of The Sydney Morning Herald: “Cuba slams Australian critics”.

After all, despite the very close relationship between Canberra and Washington, Australia was one of the nations that voted at the United Nations this week in favour of lifting the American trade and commercial embargo on the island.

So what's the problem?

Well, the Australian ambassador at the UN, Robert Hill, used the opportunity to call on the Castro brothers to do the right thing at home by freeing political prisoners and respecting human rights.

Mr Hill said that supporting moves to lift the commercial embargo should not be seen as endorsing the Castro regime's internal policies, adding:
"Holding political prisoners and failing to comply with international human rights standards is not an internal matter - it should be of concern to all of us."

The response from Havana wasn’t long in coming. A spokeswoman is quoted in the Herald as saying: "A government like Australia has no moral authority to criticise Cuba."

I beg to differ, miss.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

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12:27 pm  
Blogger Lori said...

This is exactly what Cuba does repeatedly. Governments and humans around the world think that one can reason with the Havana thugs, but fo 48 years they have demonstated the complete opposite. It is their way or no way at all.

Now I have to ask, why was a world wide embargo place on South Africa, when the issue was human rights and apartheid, yet nobody supports the embargo now on Cuba over the same issue, when as per this article, these government that do not support the embargo are well aware of the human rights violations going on in Cuba?

11:29 pm  
Anonymous asombra said...

A lot of this is more about anti-Americanism than about Cuba per se. There are also all sorts of vested business interests involved. And of course, there's the entrenched hypocrisy of using one standard for right-wing regimes like Pinochet's and a far more lenient and tolerant one for left-wing tyrannies like Cuba's.

5:02 am  

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