For IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 1st, 2015
CAFE'S Executive Board released the following statement on the announcement about the re-opening of US-Cuba embassies by their respective governments:
"CAFE welcomes the announcement by President Obama regarding the establishing of embassies in both nations. This is a necessary step towards the inevitable process of normalization and we sincerely wish that both nations will practice diplomacy within the established codes of the Vienna Convention.
Since the inception of CAFE one of our main issues has been to advocate for a re-establishment of diplomatic ties and proper embassies with adequate staff, including an officially designated ambassador. Today, President Obama reiterated the word "engagement" several times during his speech. Cuban Americans for Engagement is proud to have brought such a term to the conversation for the first time, in the context of U.S.-Cuba relations.
Cuban American obstructionists in Congress do not speak for Cuban Americans as a whole and we implore those who would delay the realization of these announcements to not invoke a community of people whose majority vehemently disagrees with misguided policies espoused by such politicians.
Unfortunately, due to U.S. law, American diplomats are required to participate and execute so-called "democracy programs" in Cuba. These interventionist programs are deemed illegal in Cuba and also by international law. No true normalization can come about with the existence of these policies. CAFE has always called for an end to these programs that have been ineffective, at best, and, in many cases, have put the lives of Cuban and American citizens in peril.
After more than 50 years of animosity both nations are going to need diplomatic corps that aren't hindered by extraterritorial legislation that puts them at odds. There is much work to be done in order for the United States and Cuba to trust each other and if there is a pre-ordained policy for regime change then that trust will never fully be forged.
CAFE will continue to press for full normalization so those embassies can function properly and become vital cogs in the machine of normalization that will bring about a new era in U.S.-Cuba relations."