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Cuba exposes to the Security Council the negative impact of the blockade on the island’s food security

New York, March 11, 2021.- Cuba presented today before the open debate of the Security Council on “Maintenance of International Peace and Security: Food Security”, the priority that the Government of the island attributes to food security, which is endorsed in the Constitution of the Republic and is materialized through the National Plan for Food Sovereignty and Nutrition Education of Cuba, approved in July 2020. In the written speech, presented by Permanent Representative Pedro Luis Pedroso Cuesta, it was highlighted how the Caribbean nation is facing the enormous challenges imposed by the economic, commercial and financial blockade of the United States, which has intensified as never before in the last four years, even during the COVID-19 pandemic, coupled with an unprecedented policy of hostility. All of which negatively impacts the island’s food security. As an example of this, the statement made reference to how only between April 2019 and March 2020, damages were recorded for an approximate value of 428 million 894 thousand 637 dollars in the area of food. These damages would have been avoided if Cuban companies had been able to access the United States market without unfair and illegitimate restrictions. Likewise, it highlights the island’s lack of access to financing from the United States banks and the international credit system, due to the so-called “country risk” and how Cuba cannot make payments in United States dollars to third parties, all of which makes it more expensive and difficult to normal access to international markets to purchase food and basic necessities. The text also illustrates the heartbreaking situation of hunger and food insecurity in the world where almost 690 million people suffer from hunger and recognizes that the persistence of an unjust and unsustainable international order, weighed down by decades of application of a savage neoliberalism, are the foundations of the exponential growth of poverty, exclusion, hunger and food insecurity; at the same time that billions of dollars are squandered in military spending instead of being dedicated to protecting life. (CubaMINREX – Permanent Mission of Cuba to the United Nations)

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