Call for New Zealand to offer aid

The Wellington Cuba Friendship Society has called on the Government to join with others in the international community and offer both solidarity and humanitarian aid to the people of Cuba.

In a letter to Prime Minister,Society Secretary, Gillian Magee, noted that while New Zealand continues to oppose the US blockade of Cuba at the United Nations the devastation being wrought by the current series of hurricanes requires some direct action.

“While we are pleased to see New Zealand continue to oppose the illegal trade blockade of Cuba” Gillian noted her concern at the appearance that New Zealand “does not seem to have offered either solidarity or practical support to Cuba at this time of need.”

The Cuban Foreign Ministry has called for the immediate lifting of the embargo noting that US Under-secretary of State of the Western Hemisphere, Thomas Shannon, had expressing sorrow for the destruction caused by hurricane Gustav and stated that the US would be ready to offer immediate and initial humanitarian aid to the Cuban people through an appropriate international assistance organization.

The Ministry said that if the US administration is really willing to cooperate with the Cuban people amidst the tragedy caused by Gustav, it should allow the sale to Cuba of essential goods and lift the restrictions preventing US companies from offering private commercial credits so that Cuba may purchase foodstuffs in the United States.

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