Tuesday, September 26, 2006

US Move to Hinder Cuba Medical Aid

Havana, Sep 26 (Prensa Latina) Cuba denounced Tuesday that the US government is trying to thwart its efforts in international health cooperation, after preventing its health minister from attending a Pan-American Health Organization meeting.

Cuban Public Health Minister Jose Ramon Balaguer had planned his stateside attendance at the 47th PAHO Directive Board meeting September 25 and 29, but the US denied his visa for second time, Granma daily informed today.

The PAHO directive board meets once a year, with the participation of the member countries health ministers. Cuba, a founding member of that organization and currently affiliated to its Executive Committee, had always been represented at such forums by its health minister, the daily recalls.
When speaking at the Council meeting yesterday, the head of Cuba s Interest Section in Washington, Dagoberto Rodriguez, called the incident a US mockery of its duties as headquarters of an international organization.

"It is a flagrant violation of the PAHO principles, and the rights of a member state," Rodriguez stated, while calling for the meeting to condemn the new US action against Cuba.

"If the US government s intention is to silence Cuba and hinder its efforts to extend international medical aid, it is wrong," the diplomat affirmed.

"Cuba will continue supporting the PAHO and member countries, and improving other peoples health," he asserted.

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