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From NY-Transfer-News@tania.blythe-systems.com Wed Oct 3 18:40:36 2001
Date: Tue, 2 Oct 2001 23:24:16 -0500 (CDT)
From: NY-Transfer-News@tania.blythe-systems.com
Subject: Cuban Ambassador at UN Gen.Assembly 10/1 (Full Text)
Article: 127495
To: undisclosed-recipients:;

Measures to eliminate iternational terrorism

Statement by the permanenbt representative of the Republic of Cuba, H.E. Ambassador Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla, before the General Assembly, 2 October 2001

Mr. President,

In a speech delivered just two days ago before one hundred thousand countrymen, President Fidel Castro stated:

The unanimous shock suffered by all peoples of the world on September 11, due to the insane terrorist attacks against the American people, has created exceptional conditions for the eradication of terrorism without the need to unleash a useless and perhaps endless war.

Terror has always been an instrument of the worst enemies of Mankind bent on suppressing and crushing the peoples' struggle for freedom.

It can never be the instrument of a truly noble and just cause.

He went on, adding:

Many seem not to have realized yet that, on September 20, before the United States Congress, the end of independence was decreed for every other state—without exception—as well as the end of the United Nations' role.

Cuba was the first country to speak of the need for an international struggle against terrorism just a few hours after the tragedy brought on the American people on September 11. We also said that: 'None of the present problems of the world can be solved by force. [...] The international community should build a world conscience against terrorism. [...] Only the intelligent policy of seeking strength through consensus and the international public opinion can decidedly uproot this problem [...] this unimaginable event should serve to launch an international struggle against terrorism. ...] The world cannot be saved unless a path of international peace and cooperation is pursued.'

I harbor no doubts that the Third World countries—I dare say almost everyone of them without exception, despite their political and religious differences—would be willing to go alongside the rest of the world in this struggle against terrorism as an alternative to war.

For these people, saving peace with dignity, with independence and without a war is the cornerstone of the struggle that we should wage together for a truly just world of free peoples.

Mr. President,

Instead of war, it is necessary to organize international cooperation in order to launch effective global actions, in accordance with International Law, the Charter of the United Nations and the relevant international conventions, based on the extraordinary power of consensus and the sovereign and united will of all States.

Cuba has expressed: “It would suffice to return to the United Nations Organization the prerogatives that it has been deprived of and let the General Assembly, its most universal and representative body, be the center of that fight for peace—regardless of its limitations due to the arbitrary veto right of the Security Council Permanent Members, most of them also a part of NATO—and for the eradication of terrorism with total and unanimous support from the world opinion.”

“It is indispensable to return to the United Nations its role in the attainment of peace.

The United Nations Organization is precisely the universal coalition we need to fight terrorism. No amorphous and unpredictable coalition, NATO or any other military organization, or group of States—no matter how powerful it might be—could replace the United Nations in a global and legitimate action against terrorism.

The United Nations should not give up its functions or prerogatives in the face of something imposed from any country, nor should it indulgently serve hegemonic interests.

The United Nations alone can address in a deep, calm, resolute and forceful way, the serious challenges of a globalized world, including terrorism as a matter of urgency.

The United Nations counts on the universal involvement of States; it has a historical and moral authority, as well as principles and rules accepted by all; and it is also entitled to adopt and codify standards. It can act upon all areas, and its countless and various bodies have great potential.

We support the Secretary General's statement that: “This Organization is the natural forum in which to build such a universal coalition.”

“ne can give global legitimacy to the long-term struggle against terrorism.“

The United Nations even has the prerogative to use force to defend the principle of collective security. However, this exceptional prerogative must be used with extreme prudence and responsibility.

Mr. President,

The United Nations has made great efforts to fight terrorism, as proven by the existing Conventions and other recently adopted instruments, as well as the many resolutions adopted by the General Assembly and other bodies.

To move forward, we must address—with total honesty and avoiding hegemonic interests or national ambition—all forms and manifestations of terrorism in every corner of the world, including -- without exception—State terrorism.

The overwhelming political will of States to fully implement international instruments must prevail without any double standards, or political selectivity, without treating differently those who live in affluent societies and without allowing States and their armed forces—especially the most powerful ones—to act in disregard of legislation and International Law.

Mr. President,

We share the calls for prudence and moderation coming from all regions. One cannot respond to the September 11th terrorist attacks with vengeful acts of war that would result in increasing violence and barbaric acts, which we can't think of today. The solution cannot be to pass legislation or decrees that authorize extrajudicial executions, or to let States kill foreign citizens, or to act covertly in other countries disrespecting laws and borders, or to use force within other States. That would divert the world from its purpose to eliminate terrorism, and would mean the end of collective security mechanisms. It would mean the rule of force and the beginning of the end of the so often proclaimed rule of law.

Terrorist acts are usually carried out by extremist groups, and even by individuals. Faced with an event of this nature—however grave -- the right to self-defense must not be invoked by a powerful State to unilaterally unleash a war resulting in global and unpredictable effects, and the death of an unthinkable number of innocent people.

Instead, that right must be exercised as the right of all to the common defense of all. The South countries would eventually be the potential victims of actions of force if today we accept war under the pretext of struggling against terrorism.

Cuba supports the many ongoing initiatives and those under discussion, which might contribute to UN actions, including those submitted by the Non-Aligned Movement, such as the call for a high level conference on international terrorism, the creation of an international cooperation center, and the negotiation of a comprehensive convention on international terrorism. We are also willing to consider constructively other initiatives that might contribute to the struggle against terrorism and might have the legitimacy invoked by the Secretary General.

Mr. President,

While the Security Council has made specific efforts and adopted several resolutions in the past, terrorism has been an area in which prudence has prevailed. In the few cases where specific acts of terrorism have been addressed, this has been addressed in the direct interest of some of its Permanent Members.

However, Cuba asked the Security Council to act when the Cubana Aircraft CU 455 was blown up in flight, killing 73 people on board in 1976; draft resolution S/23990 submitted by Cuba was not even considered.

I have now reviewed that draft resolution once again, comparing it to the one the Security Council adopted last Friday night, and I have found that although ours was more moderate, it proposed some of the concepts and measures contained in the recent one.

In its preamble, the Cuban draft considered the suppression of acts of international terrorism essential for the maintenance of international peace and security; it emphasized the need to deal effectively with terrorism; it reaffirmed that every State had the duty to refrain from organizing, instigating, assisting, participating in and consenting terrorist acts within its territory.

Our text took note that one Permanent Member of the Security Council had stated that it had evidence in its possession relating to that act. It also took into account the fact that the mastermind of the terrorist act, Orlando Bosch, resided in the territory of that same State, where, by the way, he still lives; and that the other mastermind, Luis Posada Carriles, had been doubly employed—after the appalling crime—by the Government of that State. The Cuban draft resolution also urged the involvement of the Council in the struggle against international terrorism, invoking Chapter VII of the Charter.

The Resolution did not request the use of force or sanctions, but simply asked the Council to condemn the bombing of the passengers' aircraft in flight; to indicate the obligation to clarify the crime and to punish the guilty parties. It asked the State concerned to provide all the information and evidence in its possession relating to the past and current residence of the terrorists who were in its territory, and to adopt effective measures to prevent its territory from being used to prepare, organize and carry out terrorist acts against Cuba. And it asked the Council to keep that matter under consideration.

After Cuba spoke, the Permanent Member concerned took the floor for five minutes only to state the following: “I frankly cannot help but wonder why we are here ... By meeting today ... we lose our most valuable commodity: time.” And that was the end of the meeting.

However, the Security Council has recently adopted—after a quick and poorly transparent negotiation—a resolution that orders States to work on urgent legislative modifications, that demands immediate reports and creates a sort of antiterrorist general staff.

The Council has decided to fight terrorism in many different areas, from economic and financial areas to illicit drug trafficking, border control, money-laundering, forgery of documents, traffic in explosive materials, nuclear, chemical, biological and other weapons. It also deals with issues relating to transnational organized crime, weapons of mass destruction, communications technologies, and the exchange of intelligence information on individuals and entities that practice terrorism.

To implement that resolution, it is necessary to previously identify those persons and what is to be considered a terrorist act. It's possible to imagine where those interpretations will come from.

The Security Council has been pushed to give legal support to hegemonic and arbitrary decisions made by the ruling Power, which violate the Charter and International Law, and that trespass on the sovereignty of all States. To achieve that, it usurps once again the functions of the General Assembly—the only body whose universal composition and democratic method could legitimize such far-reaching decisions. The Council uses the unbelievable method of turning into mandatory for all States some of the rules contained in conventions against terrorism, to which is up to the State alone whether they want to be signatories or not.

The Security Council, a hostage of the veto right, could only exercise a selective, capricious, arbitrary and ineffective dictatorship, instead of the moral leadership required for a comprehensive struggle against terrorism in a globalized world.

Terrorism cannot be eliminated if some terrorist acts are condemned while others are silenced or justified. It is an ethical imperative, for example, to put an end to the use of the veto to prevent international actions from protecting the Palestinian people against the countless State terrorism acts they are suffering.

It is Cuba's opinion that any use of force against terrorism will require explicit and previous authorization of the Security Council, as provided by the Charter. Cuba also believes that neither of the two resolutions adopted by the Council in the wake of the September 11 attacks could be invoked to unleash unilateral military or force actions.

Despite some arbitrary methods and decisions of the Security Council, our country, as always, will cooperate in good faith with the Council in accordance with the Charter, and will enforce its own legislation adopted by our people in a sovereign way and according to international law, and which strongly and firmly opposes any act of terrorism, whoever its perpetrator might be, as well as other serious international crimes being committed in the world.

We can so state with the moral strength given to us by the fact that our finances are transparent and our banks do not [accept] any laundered or illegitimate money; that our institutions do not illegally sell information or technology or tolerate the traffic in arms or dangerous substances; and that our borders do not protect transnational crime.

The specific measures put forth in the resolution adopted by the Security Council and that Cuba agrees with, must be applied first of all to the large banks in which, as everyone knows, money is laundered.

I must categorically state that Cuba will never participate in any military action.

Mr. President,

I have here with me today the memory of 3,478 Cubans who have died as a result of acts of aggressions and terrorist acts, and the claim for justice of 2,099 people who have become disabled as a result of those acts.

I have—among others—the memory of Felix Garcma, a diplomat of the Cuban Mission to the United Nations, who was murdered here in New York, exactly on 11 September 1980. His murderer was arrested, together with Luis Posada Carriles, last November in Panama, in the midst of an Ibero-American Summit, when, with the purpose of assassinating President Fidel Castro, they were planning to blow up a university auditorium where thousands of students were expected to gather. Posada Carriles and his group have neither been extradited nor sanctioned. There are reasons to fear their escape before being sentenced or to fear total impunity.

In the '90s alone, a total of 68 acts were perpetrated against Cuba;

33 of them took place over the last five years.

Our country speaks with the moral position of not having committed any terrorist act ever, not even the attempt to kill—in an act of legitimate self-defense—the direct perpetrators and masterminds of abominable crimes, financed and carried out by the Cuban American National Foundation and other mob groups in Miami against our people.

However, bombings, assassination attempts against Cuban leaders and attacks against vital targets of our economy have been organized with total impunity from abroad over the last few years.

Only the consideration and respect of our people for the victims of the September 11 attack, as well as the seriousness of the current situation that brings us together to seek for constructive solutions, encourage me to contribute to the spirit of this debate with our silence on the origins of terrorism against Cuba, by not making specific reference to the real causes, the accomplices, the actual responsible people, the flow of financing, the venal courts that absolve criminals, and the territories where terrorist organizations acting against Cuba are based.

I share the hope that the September 11 tragedy will lead to reflection and, in line with the desire of the US people, to changes in those policies that encourage and, in essence, justify terrorism against my people. Terrorism against Cuba must be brought to an end.

I must state that, in the face of impunity, Cuba has all the right to defend itself against terrorism. The five Cuban youth, who are unjustly incarcerated and suffering humiliating treatment in Florida, do not repent of having saved heroically the lives of Cuban and American citizens.

As President Fidel Castro stated, “Cuba, with a moral authority of being the country that has suffered the most and the longest from terrorist actions, the one whose people are not afraid of anything because there is no threat or power in the world that can intimidate it, claims that it is opposed to terrorism and opposed to war.”

Although the possibilities are now remote, Cuba reaffirms the need to avert a war of unpredictable consequences whose very authors have admitted not to have the least idea of how the events will unfold.

Likewise, Cuba reiterates its willingness to cooperate with every country in the total eradication of terrorism.

“Whatever happens, the territory of Cuba will never be used for terrorist actions against the American people and we will do everything within our reach to prevent such actions against that people. Today we are expressing our solidarity while appealing to peace and calm.”

Finally, the President of our country, expressing the unanimous sentiment of our people, stated:

“Our independence, our principles and our social achievements will be defended with honor to the last drop of blood, if we are attacked!”

Thank you very much.