Cuba open to more UN visits, Havana tells rights panel

March 12th, 2008 - 1:22 pm ICT by admin  


Geneva, March 12 (IANS) Cuba has said before the UN Human Rights Council that it is ready to invite other special rapporteurs to the island after the recent visit of Jean Ziegler, special UN rapporteur on the Right to Nutrition, EFE news agency reported Wednesday. Cuban envoy Juan Antonio Fernandez Palacios was addressing the international grouping Tuesday, a day after Ziegler presented a report to the council that called on the US to end its 45-year-old economic embargo on the communist-ruled island.

The diplomat thanked Ziegler for his request directed at Washington, and expressed Havana’s desire to invite other rapporteurs if “the constructive environment continues”.

“Pressure never has worked and never will work,” the Cuban ambassador said.

Meanwhile, the UN special rapporteur against torture, Manfred Nowak, said Tuesday at a press conference that he had received indications that Cuba might soon invite him to visit the island.

Raul Castro has taken over the helms of the Cuban government after last month’s resignation of his ailing older brother Fidel Castro.

Jean Ziegler, Swiss sociologist and special UN rapporteur on the Right to Nutrition, visited the island last autumn at the invitation of Cuban authorities.

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