STATEMENT BY AMBASSADOR RODNEY LOPEZ CLEMENTE,
DEPUTY PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF CUBA TO THE UNITED NATIONS,
AT THE GENERAL DEBATE
OF THE UN COMMITEE ON INFORMATION
DURING ITS 26TH SESSION
28 APRIL 2004
Allow me to reiterate our appreciation for your efficient Chairmanship of our Committee. We would also like to express our satisfaction by welcoming the new Member States Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname and Switzerland.
I also avail myself of this opportunity to extend our appreciation to Mr. Sashi Tharoor, Under Secretary General for Communications and Public Information, for the report presented on the work undertaken.
My delegation joins the statements made by the distinguished Representative of Qatar on behalf of G-77 and China.
The review of the important documents the Committee shall express its views on, leads to reflections that compel us to make some considerations.
The gap between developed and developing countries in terms of communication and information is ever increasing.
Despite all the efforts made to take the advances of science and technology in communications and information to the different regions of the planet, this enormous gap intensifies before our eyes.
Regrettably, the more technologies develop, the larger is the gap. While in the developed world we witness the Internet boom and the implementation of new technologies, in developing countries this progress is slow and difficult due to persisting poverty, diseases, hunger, conflicts and war in the South.
Undoubtedly, the last World Summit on the Information Society was an important step forward. Practical, lasting and sustainable solutions will be necessary for the insertion of developing countries in the information society. Developing countries require stable and foreseeable sources of financial resources favoring the access to information technologies.
This imbalance, we refer to, between the developed and the developing worlds is also present in the information dissemination field. I could state many examples to prove how the information, which disseminates from the developed world, distorts, falsifies, twists or ignores news and events that occur in our world, or even creates news to distract the international community's attention. Each day, a New World Order in Information and Communications is more necessary.
We should reinforce the possibilities our Organization offers us.
It is clear that the Information Centers of the United Nations shall play, each and every day, a more important role in the diffusion of the just and balanced information the world needs.
The rationalization process of the Information Centers shall take into account that there are significant differences among the regions of the world, thus, a unique model for all cannot be implemented, as the existent gap between developed and developing countries in terms of information and communication technologies have continued to broaden and the majority of the sectors of the population do not enjoy their benefits.
My delegation considers that the outcome of the experience of the Regional Center in Western Europe may be observed, although it cannot be implemented mechanically.
Developing countries represent another reality and shall be treated, as such, within the Information System of our Organization, with all the attention they require.
A better diffusion of the work and decisions of the General Assembly results imperative.
My delegation considers very positive and relevant the purpose of elaborating a communications strategy to continue to spread the works and decisions of the General Assembly.
We all know the importance of the General Assembly as the most universal and representative body of the United Nations. Our Organization is committed to its revitalization and the strengthening of its role. In this sense, it is totally logical that we seek for all the mechanisms at our reach so that the international community gets to know better the important and intense work of our General Assembly with its work outcomes.
My delegation is compelled to denounce, once more, in this Committee, the daily radio and television aggression towards my country from the territory of the United States of America.
Despite our denunciations, these actions towards Cuba have increased. Every week 2,227 and a half radio and television hours are broadcast from the United States, through 29 different frequencies, by 18 medium and shortwave, frequency modulated and television stations. Altogether, between 312 and 315 hours of broadcast, which has nothing to do with balanced and objective information, are g enerated from t hem o n a daily b asis. O n t he contrary, t hey base their program on misinformation and falsification. Out of these 18 stations, 15 belong to organizations that are linked to or promote known terrorists who are based, operate and a ct in US territory with full knowledge and consent of US Federal Administration authorities.
Twelve of these stations broadcast information against Cuba. The notorious and wrongly called television and radio Marti are among them.
They are property of the US Government who annually devotes around 35 million dollars to this radio-electronic war against Cuba.
These broadcasts not only attempt against Cuba's sovereignty but also constitute flagrant violations of the regulations established by the International Frequency Registration Board of the International Telecommunication Union. Thus, they constitute actions that violate International Law.
The United States continues to finance, facilitate and stimulate illegal broadcasts against Cuba, which distort our country's reality, encourage illegal emigration under dangerous conditions, disobedience and indiscipline, violence and terrorist actions in defiance of laws and rule of law. The United Nations has adopted several resolutions that highlight the need of deterring the exploitation of information for criminal or terrorist purposes. The use of information with a marked interest to subvert the internal order of States, violate their sovereignty and carry out actions of interference in their internal affairs results an illegal action.
Notwithstanding, the United States continues with its radio-electronic war against our country, as an essential part of its obsessive and sickly policy of destroying the Cuban Revolution. In this effort, the US has continued to use all the means. They have strengthened their broadcast potentials by improving their antennas, making changes in TV transmissions, VHF to UHF. They have invaded broadcast bands, acquired aerostats, among other actions.
As known, all these actions have come up against the skills and abilities of Cuban specialists and technicians who have managed to interrupt the television broadcasts and a great part of the radio broadcasts. But, over all, they have clashed with the decision and conviction of a people who repudiate and reject this kind of aggression.
Cuba reiterates its condemnation t o this aggression a nd totally rejects the U S Government's attempt to maintain and increase radio and television broadcasts towards Cuba. The decision of the kind of information the Cuban people wish to receive sovereignly corresponds to our country and not to those who, from the US governmental administration, waste the taxpayers' contribution and conspire with terrorists in their plans against the Cuban Revolution.
Cuba will continue to exercise its sovereignty and independence and will continue to adopt all the measures at our reach to deter these aggressive actions.
Thank you very much.***