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Canada: Still Weak kneed and walking in the wrong direction

Reader comment on item: I Was a U.N. Delegate

Submitted by Ted Harlson (Canada), Jun 13, 2009 at 16:29

Canada is still weak kneed and worse in the face of time and lack of integrity. I found Canada is lobbying to include Cuba in the Organization of American States. It isn't right according to my following reasons.

Subject: "Inclusion" not based on principle

I stumbled across this move by Canada to include Cuba to the OAS. Cuba is a continuing bastion of totalitarian communism, historically known to have sided with Stalin, and China's killing machines.

They are one and the same type of country. Why are we compromising and including them in as "sovereign" when they don't even recognize the sovereignty of their own citizens?

Is Canada welcoming this kind of regime? Aren't we supposed to influence them instead of being influenced by them and their sordid ways?

Please, I would like an answer.

Ted Harlson.

------------------------------

Mr. Harlson:

The Canadian Embassy in Havana has forwarded your email of June 9, 2009, concerning Canada's position on the reintegration of Cuba into the Organization of American States (OAS).

Canada has a longstanding relationship with Cuba. Our approach has been to promote the emergence of a more open political and economic system that respects and promotes the civil, political and human rights of its citizens. We use our diplomatic channels and our access to convey our concerns about the curtailment of civil and political rights directly to the Cuban authorities. During Cuba's review before the United Nations Human Rights Council in February 2009, Canada called on the Cuban government to lift restrictions on the rights to freedom of expression and association, and to unconditionally release all remaining political prisoners.

On June 3, 2009, the Organization of American States unanimously approved a resolution revoking the 1962 suspension of Cuba from the organization. It also made clear that Cuba's future participation in the Organization must be in accordance with the practices, purposes, and principles of the OAS, including respect for democracy and human rights.

Thank you for writing to the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade about this issue.

Desk Officer/Agent de Pupitre, Cuba

Caribbean, Central America and Regional Policy (GCA)

Direction des Antilles, Amérique Centrale et Politique régionale (GCA)

DFAIT/MAECI

Ottawa

Submitting....

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