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ACN: Cuba Reiterates Willingness to Normalize Relations with Washington

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  • Walter Lippmann
    (The English translation of Josefina Vidal s text should be available later today. Presumably this is the Cuban response to Obama s comments to Jose
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 1, 2013
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      (The English translation of Josefina Vidal's text should
      be available later today. Presumably this is the Cuban
      response to Obama's comments to Jose Diaz-Balart which
      were broadcast on Telemundo this week. They are posted
      below for readers' convenience.)
      ===============================================
      Cuba Reiterates Willingness to Normalize Relations with Washington

      HAVANA, Cuba, Feb 1 (ACN) A statement released Friday by the director of the United States Department at the Cuban Foreign Ministry, Josefina Vidal, reads that the United States can always count on the willingness of the Cuban people and government to jointly work for the advancement of bilateral relations.

      The statement reads that It is regrettable that President (Barack) Obama continues to be poorly advised and informed about Cuban reality and the actual feeling of the Cuban people, who wish the normalization of bilateral relations.

      Cuba continues to change and advance, but the over- 50- year US hostile policy on Cuba has not changed at all, the statement concludes.

      ===========================================
      (This is just the section on Cuba.
      Link to full interview follows.)
      =======================================
      President Barack Obama participates in an interview with Jose Diaz Balart for
      Telemundo in the White House Library, Jan. 30, 2013. (Official White House Photo
      by Lawrence Jackson)
      Obama tells Telemundo he hopes for immigration overhaul within 6 months
      by Telemundo
      10:26 pm on 01/30/2013

      On the heels of his remarks in Las Vegas on immigration reform, President Barack
      Obama granted an interview to “Noticiero Telemundo” news anchor José
      Díaz-Balart at the White House.

      Telemundo’s Jose Diaz-Balart (JDB)

      5 am ET, 10:55 am CT, 12:30 pm PT).
      =================================
      JDB:

      Yesterday Secretary Clinton– referring to Cuba said it’s a dictatorship that
      must change in the near future. That policy of your administration, of no
      normalization until there’s democratization, do you see that changing in your
      second term with a new secretary of State?

      PO:

      Well, you know– we have tried to– make overtures that were good for the
      Cuban people. You know, loosening up remittances from family members.
      Loosening up travel for family members back to Cuba. Because our view has been
      that that empowers civil society inside of Cuba. That empowers people– who,
      you know, wanna have a voice in Cuba.

      But what we’ve also said is– is that– in order for us to see an actual
      normalization– of the relations between– the United States and Cuba, that we
      have to do something about all those political prisoners– who are still there.
      We’ve gotta do something about just basic freedoms of– of the press and–
      and assembly.

      We don’t expect every country to operate the way we do. And obviously we do
      business with a lot of countries around the world– that don’t meet our
      standards in terms of– you know, constitutions and rights. But we do think
      it’s important for us to continue to push to make sure that– the Cuban
      people themselves– have a voice in their lives.

      And– my hope is is that– slowly but surely– the Cuban leadership begins to
      recognize, “It’s time to join the 21st century.” You know, it– it– I
      mean it– it– it’s– it’s one thing to have cars from the 1950s. It’s
      another thing when (CHUCKLE) your whole political ideology– is coming out–
      is– is 50 years or s– or 60 years old and– and it’s been proven not to
      work.

      And– I think that we can have– progress over the next four years. I’m
      happy to engage it. I think it would be good for the Cuban people. But– but
      it’s– it’s gotta be a two way street. It can’t just be– that we look
      away completely from– you know, the very sad circumstances that a lot of
      Cubans– still live in.
      http://nbclatino.com/2013/01/30/obama-tells-telemundo-he-hopes-for-immigration-\
      overhaul-within-6-months/>

      =========================================
      WALTER LIPPMANN
      Los Angeles, California
      Editor-in-Chief, CubaNews
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/CubaNews/
      "Cuba - Un Paraíso bajo el bloqueo"
      =========================================
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