People's Daily Online
11:01, September 19, 2007
Cuba will hold informal talks with the European Union (EU) under the framework of the United Nations General Assembly, Cuban Foreign Minister Felipe Perez Roque told a press conference here on Tuesday.
However, such talks would not be regarded as formal political dialogues, said the minister, noting that the precondition for holding political dialogue is EU's lifting of its sanctions on Cuba.
Cuba will firmly safeguard its national sovereignty and rights and will never yield to any pressure or threat, he added.
The minister praised Portugal, which holds the current EU rotating presidency, and the EU Commission's positive gesture on EU's contact with Cuba. But he also said differences on the issue remain within the bloc.
Roque said he will hold talks with his Spanish counterpart Miguel Angel Moratinos on the sidelines of the ongoing UN General Assembly as agreed by the two sides in June.
The EU is split over its policy towards Cuba. Spain, Italy and Germany are in the forefront of countries seeking dialogues with the Caribbean country, while Poland and the Czech Republic favor pressuring Havana for political change.