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Liberia seeks more content in Cuban relations

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Foreign Minister Marjon Kamara has expressed pleasure at the excellent relations subsisting between the Republics of Liberia and Cuba but said its about time to give more content to the relationship.

Speaking when the Charge d’Affaires at the Cuban Embassy here, Mr. Yordenie Despaigne Vera, paid her a courtesy call at her Foreign Ministry office on Friday, April 29, 2016, Minister Kamara said collaboratively both countries have supported each other.

She highlighted some of Cuba’s assistance to Liberia, naming the provision of several scholarships, and support to the fight against the Ebola Virus Disease, that struck West Africa. “Cuba had really been exceptional in their response to that epidemic,” she said.

As regards Liberia’s support, she stressed the country’s consistent backing at the United Nations on a resolution which expressed the concern and condemnation of the global community on the imposition of unilateral sanctions upon Cuba.

Foreign Minister Kamara, who earlier served a Liberia’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations and Ambassador-designate to the Republic of Cuba, apologized to Mr. Vera for being unable to have presented her Letters of Credence to the Cuban President, H.E. Raúl Castro during her tenure in New York due to unforeseen circumstances; but is hopeful that her successor will be able to present his Letters of Credence there in the near future.

On further cooperation, the Liberia’s foreign minister urged collaboration and cooperation with Cuba in the education and health sectors. She indicated since education and human resource development are priorities for Liberia, both countries will need to discuss how scholarship programs offered Liberia can be synchronized in order to meet the real needs of the country.

In the health sector, Minister Kamara suggested that both countries begin to explore how Cuba can replicate the arrangements it has with other countries by bringing in Cuban expertise to support and train Liberian healthcare professionals here in the country.

Speaking earlier, the Charge d’Affaires at the Cuban Embassy, Mr. Yordenie Despaigne Vera, on behalf of the President of Cuba, H.E. Raúl Castro extended heartfelt felicitations to the President of Liberia, Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.

On behalf of the Government of Cuba, especially the Cuban Foreign Minister, Mr. Bruno Eduardo Rodríguez Parrilla and the Cuban Embassy, Mr. Vera expressed congratulations to Ms. Kamara on her preferment as Liberia’s foreign minister. He prayed that both of them will work assiduously to further strengthen the cordial relations subsisting between the two countries.

He also used the opportunity to express his country’s deepest condolence for the loss of thousands of Liberians during the Ebola outbreak. The Cuban Charge d’Affaires reminded Minister Kamara that April 19, marked the 42nd anniversary since Liberia and Cuba established diplomatic relations and assured that Cuba will continue to work with Liberia to extend and strengthen bilateral relations.

As a demonstration of that commitment, Mr. Vera said, the decision of the Cuban Government to reopen its diplomatic mission in Monrovia at the height of an Embassy and the appointment of a permanent Charge d’Affaires in November 2015. Cuba previously operated its Embassy from Accra, Ghana.

On cooperation with Liberia in its human resource development, Mr. Vera said it is the result of traditional friendship between both countries and assured that Cuba will continue to support Liberia’s recovery process especially in the health and education sectors.

Mr. Vera was accompanied to the Foreign Ministry by the Second Secretary of the Cuban Embassy, Ms. Carmen Maury Toledo. 

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