Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez responded to President Donald Trump’s allusions to Cuba in the State of the Union address, which the U.S. president gave this Tuesday night before Congress.
“If President Trump wanted to support the people of Cuba, he would have to lift the genocidal blockade, resume banned flights and grant visas to Cubans,” Rodríguez wrote in his Twitter account.
“He should restore Americans’ freedom to travel to Cuba,” he added.
Si el pdte Trump (Estado de la Unión) quisiera apoyar al pueblo de #Cuba, tendría que levantar el bloqueo genocida, reanudar vuelos prohibidos y otorgar visas a los cubanos. Debería restablecer la libertad de viajar a Cuba a los estadounidenses. #SOTUS #StateOfTheUnion
— Bruno Rodríguez P (@BrunoRguezP) February 5, 2020
The foreign minister’s tweet came after Trump expressed in the Capitol his support for “the hopes” of Cubans, Nicaraguans and Venezuelans “to restore democracy.”
“As we restore American leadership throughout the world, we are once again standing up for freedom in our hemisphere. That is why my administration reversed the failing policies of the previous administration on Cuba,” said the president this Tuesday.
Rodríguez’s response was supported by other Cuban officials, such as Carlos Fernández de Cossío, director of the Foreign Ministry’s United States Department, and Johana Tablada, deputy director of this section of the Foreign Ministry.
Fernández de Cossío said that “U.S. policy seeks to use its immense and asymmetrical power to cause Cuba’s economic collapse” and shows “a sickly dread at the possibility that a small Caribbean nation can show economic and social successes if it were allowed to live in peace.”
La política estadounidense busca aporvehcar su inmenso y asimétrico poder para provocar el colapso económico de #Cuba . Un pavor enfermizo ante la posibilidad de que una nación pequeña del Caribe pueda mostrar éxitos economicos y sociales si se le permite vivir en paz.
— Carlos F. de Cossio (@CarlosFdeCossio) February 5, 2020
For her part, Tablada said she agreed with Rodríguez and wrote that “with the cynicism of unilateral measures of extermination against Cuba and its people, President Trump and other senior U.S. government officials have taken hypocrisy to unprecedented levels.”
De acuerdo! Crece el abismo entre discurso y realidad. Con cinismo de política de medidas unilaterales exterminio contra #Cuba y su pueblo, el Presidente #Trump y otros altos funcionarios gobierno de #EstadosUnidos han llevado la hipocresía a niveles nunca antes vistos.
— Johana Tablada de la Torre (@JohanaTablada) February 5, 2020
After the thaw between Cuba and the U.S. promoted by former presidents Barack Obama and Raúl Castro, relations between the two countries have receded following the arrival of Donald Trump in the White House. The current U.S. government has rolled back Obama’s policies and imposed new sanctions on the island, including new restrictions on travel and remittances, the prohibition of cruises and the closure of consular services in Havana.
In addition, it has returned to hostile rhetoric towards the island, and several incidents have occurred that have led to minimal bilateral ties, in a context marked by the upcoming presidential elections in the United States.