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Latin America welcomes new era of US–Cuba relations

News from Nicaragua | Friday, 19 December 2014 |

Latin America leaders from all sides of the political spectrum have welcomed the historic US – Cuba agreement to restart diplomatic relations, describing it as the beginning of a new era for the whole region.

Venezuelan President Maduro commented: ‘We must recognise the brave and necessary gesture of President Barack Obama. He has taken a step, perhaps the most important step of his presidency.’ He went on to describe the agreement as a “moral victory’ not just for Cuba but the whole region.

Nicaragua’s President Daniel Ortega applauded the ‘retaking of a rational route to diplomatic relations that should never have been suspended in the first place.’ He described the renewal of diplomatic ties a ‘new era in the history of our America,’ and referred to the restoration of the rights of Cuba usurped for decades by successive US authorities.

President Ortega went on to express profound respect for Cuba in reaching such a historic accord and for President Obama in taking a courageous step. He also applauded the critical role played by Pope Francis and the Canadian government in negotiations between the US and Cuba.

Argentine President Cristina Kirchner commented: ‘This is something that has moved the whole world. We thought we would never see this, and we should recognise that it is a very intelligent decision by the US president.’

‘On behalf of all the Colombian people and I think the whole continent, we celebrate the boldness and courage of President Obama and the Cuban government in making this decision,’ Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos stated.

Mexico’s President Enrique Pena Nieto expressed support for the move, arguing Cuba deserves ‘equal rights’ to the rest of the region.