Wed Jan 28, 2009 8:25pm GMT
HAVANA (Reuters) - Cuba is inviting the U.N. special investigator on torture to visit the country this year, Foreign Minister Felipe Perez said on Wednesday.
Perez announced the planned visit of Manfred Novak as he elaborated on plans for Cuba to testify next month before the U.N. Human Rights Council on the situation in the Communist-run nation.
"Cuba is a country where in the last 50 years there has not been a single person ''disappeared'', case of torture nor extrajudicial execution," Perez said.
For decades Cuba refused to cooperate with the U.N. Human Rights Commission or receive investigators, claiming they were part of U.S. efforts to besmirch and undermine the revolution.
The U.N. Human Rights Commission was reorganized into the Human Rights Council with less western influence in 2007. Cuba has cooperated with the new body and is a member.
Novak has the title of "Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment." The U.N. special rapporteur for food visited Cuba in 2007.
U.N. member governments must present a report on the human rights situation in their country to the U.N. Human Rights Council every four years.