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Posted November 05, 2003 by publisher in Castro's Cuba

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Washington Times

HAVANA, Nov. 5 (UPI)—Argentina will pressure Uruguay to drop its opposition to offering Cuba membership in a key regional trade bloc.
Known as Mercosur, the association is a South American common market that has long excluded Cuba.

Raul Taleb, Argentina’s ambassador to Cuba, said Wednesday his country would work to “persuade Uruguay to rise to the circumstance”, since integrating Cuba into Mercosur “means acknowledging reality; the worst thing we could do is isolate Cuba.”

Uruguay and Cuba broke off diplomatic relations after Cuban leader Fidel Castro called Uruguayan leader Jorge Batlle a “foolish clown” and “U.S. boot-licker” for having sponsored a U.N. resolution condemning Cuba’s human rights track record, according to Mercosur Press.

Earlier Wednesday Argentine Foreign Affairs Secretary Rafael Bielsa also said Argentina and Brazil would “put forward the Cuban proposal, but there’s a member who is in disagreement so we still have to work on the hypothesis.”

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