Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez stressed that the country strengthens its cooperation with United Nations mechanisms that deal with human rights when presenting the national report to the Universal Periodic Review.
'We have strictly complied with the international commitments and obligations acquired under these mechanisms,' he said, and explained that 'we are part of 44 of the 61 international human rights instruments, which places the country in the group of States with the highest level of ratifications.'
The minister said that Havana continues to promote initiatives in the Human Rights Council and in the Third Committee of the General Assembly, in defense of human rights, including the right to development and peace.
'We have consistently opposed the attempts to politically manipulate these bodies; to selectivity and double standards,' the Minister of Foreign Affairs defended.
Rodríguez also referred to the consolidation of cooperation with humanitarian and human rights organizations around the world, as well as the numerous visits made every year to the country by senior United Nations executives, their funds, programs and specialized agencies; as well as representatives of non-governmental organizations.
On the other hand, the foreign minister pointed out that despite the achievements in terms of promotion, protection, and realization of human rights, dissatisfaction persists and great efforts are made to resolve the difficulties.
In this regard, he recalled that Cuba is a small developing island country, immersed in an unfavorable international economic environment, in which irrational and unsustainable patterns of production and consumption, and market rules and international financial institutions that are not very democratic and transparent prevail.
In addition, he stressed, we face the adverse effects of climate change and 'the impact of high-intensity natural disasters on our economy, to whose confrontation we must allocate large resources.'
Despite the complex circumstances, the country is striving to ensure that no one is ever left homeless, he said.
Consequently, the foreign minister detailed the priorities for the future, among which to continue advancing in the updating of the model of economic and social development, and the strengthening of the legal-institutional framework for the promotion and protection of human rights stand out.
He also mentioned the improvement of the political system and the Cuban model of socialist democracy; and the defense of values and of national unity and independence.
'With these objectives, we will soon embark on a process of reform of our Constitution, which will surely be characterized by broad popular participation,' he said.