Sinn Féin’s spokesperson on Foreign Affairs, Seán Crowe TD, has welcomed that a motion calling for a lifting of the US blockade of Cuba was comprehensively passed at the United Nations.

Deputy Crowe said:

“A motion in the UN calling for an end to the illegal and inhuman economic, commercial and financial blockade of Cuba was historically passed with 191 in favour and 2 against.

“This is the 24th year in a row that this motion has been passed and this year it has only been opposed by the USA and Israel. It is clear that Governments and people worldwide reject this cruel blockade.

“This unilateral measure imposed against Cuba for 55 years has cost the island hundreds of millions of dollars and its human impact is incalculable.

“The recent rapprochement in relations between the USA and Cuba opens up the possibility of an end to the blockade. The relaxation of some aspects of it is already assisting the Cuban economy, but the blockade must go in its entirety.

“Despite Embassies opening in Washington and Havana this summer, the blockade is still very much in place. Normal relations between two countries cannot exist while one is kept under such an unfair and brutal blockade. Ending the blockade is an urgent necessity.

“It is disappointing to see Israel voting against this positive motion but it is not really surprising considering its own illegal and inhuman blockade in Gaza.”