Cuban President Fidel Castro, as Chairman of the Non-Aligned Nations, spoke to the United Nations General Assembly on Friday (12 October).
Cuban President Fidel Castro, as Chairman of the Non-Aligned Nations, spoke to the United Nations General Assembly on Friday (12 October). He said that he had not come to speak of Cuba, but the Third World and the Non-Aligned Movement. Though he said he had not come to wound the United States with unnecessary adjectives, he at tacked them for their Middle East policy, accused them of sustaining South Africa and he called for independence for Puerto Rico. Security was very tight as many thousand of Cuban exiles living in the United States had come to protest his presence and there were threats to kill him.
SYNOPSIS: Security police held back the jeering crowds on Thursday (11 October) as Cuban official cars arrived at the Cuban Mission. The demonstrators dared Dr. Castro to come and show himself.
President Castro's address to the General Assembly on Friday (12 October) followed closely the declaration issued by the Non-Aligned Summit, held in Havana early last month under his chairmanship.
He particularly accused the industrialised countries of getting even richer by exploiting the resources of the poorer countries of the poorer countries.
As the Cuban President delivered his two-hour speech, three American warships steamed toward his country in a show of force against the presence of Soviet troops there. Dr. Castro denounced what he called the United States' hostile acts and threats against Cuba. And he reminded the Assembly that the ninety-three-nation Non-Aligned Movement had condemned an economic blockade designed by the United States to isolate and destroy the Cuban revolution.
President Castro called for a "farewell to arms" and, pleading the cause of peace and co-operation, proposed a three hundred billion dollar investment programme in developing countries. He said the developing countries were not asking for a gift. His welcome was a warm one, and the General Assembly was packed. His speech drew a prolonged standing ovation at the end, with most of the representatives of the one hundred an fifty-two nations joining in. It was the first time he had addressed the United Nations for nineteen years.