Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

IN THE PAPERS

'Caution, another Cast Lead lies ahead'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Rising into the ranks of Haute Couture

Read more

DEBATE

Gaza: How to Stop the Spiral? Israel Readies For Ground Offensive

Read more

DEBATE

Gaza: How to Stop the Spiral? Israel Readies For Ground Offensive (part 2)

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

A thin line between fact-checking and propaganda in Gaza social media coverage

Read more

#THE 51%

Sweden: A Feminist's Paradise?

Read more

FOCUS

Ireland's missing babies cast light on dark history

Read more

WEB NEWS

World Cup 2014: Germany-Brazil inspires the Web

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Boutros-Ghali: 'I wanted to reform the UN'

Read more

  • Video: Living in Tel Aviv, under threat of rocket attack

    Read more

  • Video: Palestinians fear full Israeli military offensive in Gaza

    Read more

  • Amazon snubs French free delivery ban with one-cent charge

    Read more

  • Manhunt as FIFA partner flees Rio hotel to avoid arrest

    Read more

  • US prepared to negotiate Gaza ceasefire, Obama says

    Read more

  • French companies will have to accept anonymous CVs

    Read more

  • Ukrainian forces close in on Donetsk

    Read more

  • Germany asks US intelligence station chief to leave country

    Read more

  • UN chief Ban Ki-moon appoints new Syria mediator

    Read more

  • Video: Muslims in China confront obstacles to Ramadan fasting

    Read more

  • Tour de France passes WWI Chemin des Dames battlefield

    Read more

  • Senegalese man awarded French visa in gay marriage debate

    Read more

  • Foiled French jihadist ‘targeted Louvre and Eiffel Tower’

    Read more

  • Obama in Texas to urge congressional action on child migrant crisis

    Read more

  • Iraq’s heritage 'in danger' from ISIS militants

    Read more

Americas

Not words, but 'deeds' needed from Cuba, Venezuela, says Obama

©

Video by Thom WALKER

Latest update : 2009-04-19

Cuba and Venezuela, as well as the United States, need to show "not simply words but also deeds" if they want their relations to warm, said Barack Obama as the Americas Summit wrapped up in Trinidad and Tobago on Sunday.

AFP - Cuba and Venezuela, as well as the United States, need to show "not simply words but also deeds" if they are to thaw their relations, US President Barack Obama said Sunday.

While noting the "positive signs" in Washington's relationships with the two hostile Latin American states, Obama, speaking at the close of a Summit of the Americas, said they had to be backed up by action.

"The test for all of us is not simply words, but also deeds," he said.

Specifically on Cuba, Obama admitted that Washington's half-century-old policy on the communist island "hasn't worked the way we want it to; the Cuban people aren't free."

But that policy will not be changed "overnight," he said.

"Issues of political prisoners, freedom of speech and democracy are important, and can't simply be brushed aside," he said.

Obama's comments tempered speculation that a historic thaw in relations between the United States and Cuba -- and with Cuba's chief ally Venezuela -- was on its way following conciliatory gestures by all three countries.

Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro in recent days said they were willing to open talks on such hot-button issues as political prisoners and human rights.

And Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez went out of his way during the summit to shake Obama's hand several times and to give him a book about Latin America and its exploitation by big powers through the centuries.

Still, Chavez and many other Latin American leaders at the summit railed at Cuba being the only country from the region to be excluded.

They also pressed their demand that the US embargo on Cuba be lifted.

Obama, though, repeatedly said that the only way the United States would make more concessions to Cuba would be if Raul Castro first made concrete policy changes. He also acknowledged half a century of animosity and mistrust would not be quickly set aside.

Date created : 2009-04-19

Comments

COMMENT(S)