GA / CUBA

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26-Oct-2016 00:02:57
With 191 member state voting in favour and two abstentions, the United Nations General Assembly (GA) overwhelmingly adopted a resolution calling on the United States of America (US) to lift the embargo on Cuba. The United States for the first time abstained instead of voting against the resolution. UNIFEED

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STORY: GA / CUBA
TRT: 02.57
SOURCE: UNIFEED
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / SPANISH / NATS

DATELINE: 26 OCTOBER 2016, NEW YORK CITY / FILE

SHOTLIST:

1. Wide shot, exterior United Nations headquarters
2. Wide shot, Ambassador Samantha Power of the United States walks up to the General Assembly podium
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Samantha Power, Permanent Representative to the United Nations, United States:
“For more than 50 years the United States had a policy aimed at isolating the government of Cuba. For roughly half of those years, UN member states have voted overwhelmingly for a General Assembly resolution that condemns the US embargo and calls for it to be ended. The United States has always voted against this resolution. Today, the United States will abstain.”
4. Various shots, applause
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Samantha Power, Permanent Representative to the United Nations, United States:
“Instead of isolating Cuba, as President Obama has repeatedly said, our policy isolated the United States, including right here at the United Nations. Under President Obama we have adopted a new approach. Rather than try to close off Cuba from the rest of the world, we want the world of opportunities and ideas open to the people of Cuba. After 50 plus years of pursuing the path of isolation, we have chosen to take the path of engagement.”
6. Zoom out, Foreign Minister of Cuba Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla, walks up to podium
7. SOUNDBITE (Spanish) Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Cuba:
“The announced abstention vote surely constitutes a positive step in the future of the improvement of relations between the United States and Cuba. I thank the words and efforts of Ambassador Samantha Power. The majority of the executive regulations and the laws that establish the blockade are, nevertheless, still in place and are applied rigorously up until this minute by the US government agencies. We recognize that the executive measures adopted by the US government constitute positive, but they are of a very limited scope and reach.”
8. Various shots, applause
9. Various shots, voting boards

STORYLINE:

With 191 member state voting in favour and two abstentions, the United Nations General Assembly (GA) today (26 Oct) overwhelmingly adopted a resolution calling on the United States of America (US) to lift the embargo on Cuba. The United States for the first time abstained instead of voting against the resolution.

Addressing the GA, US Ambassador Samantha Power said “for more than 50 years the United States had a policy aimed at isolating the government of Cuba. For roughly half of those years, UN member states have voted overwhelmingly for a General Assembly resolution that condemns the US embargo and calls for it to be ended. The United States has always voted against this resolution. Today, the United States will abstain.”

The US Ambassador said “instead of isolating Cuba, as President Obama has repeatedly said, our policy isolated the United States, including right here at the United Nations. Under President Obama we have adopted a new approach. Rather than try to close off Cuba from the rest of the world, we want the world of opportunities and ideas open to the people of Cuba. After 50 plus years of pursuing the path of isolation, we have chosen to take the path of engagement.”

For his part, Cuba’s Foreign Minister thanked Power for the abstention vote, but said “the majority of the executive regulations and the laws that establish the blockade are, nevertheless, still in place and are applied rigorously up until this minute by the US government agencies.”

The US embargo against Cuba was first imposed on October 19, 1960. The GA has, since 1992, passed a resolution every year condemning the embargo.
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unifeed161026c
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