The United States is coming under renewed UN pressure to end its 40-year-old embargo of Cuba. For the 16th consecutive year the General Assembly voted overwhelmingly to urge Washington to lift the ban. Only Israel, Palau and the Marshall Islands voted with the US against the resolution.
Just last week the White House rejected any easing of sanctions without a transition to democracy on the communist island. Cuba’s Foreign Minister Felipe Perez Roque said the embargo was the main obstacle to the development and welfare of the Cuban people. He described it as a “systematic and flagrant violation of Cuba’s rights”. The US representative said the onus was on Havana to change, saying the Cuban leadership had an “embargo on freedom”.
A lack of basic provisions is just one impact of the trade ban on Cuba. But the situation is unlikely to change anytime soon with most Americans supporting their government’s position. The UN resolution is non-binding and such votes have had no effect on US policy in the past.