US Makes Historic Vote At United Nations By Not Voting At All
For the past 25 years, the United Nations has voted on a resolution calling for an end to the Cuba embargo. Until 2016, the U.S. always voted no.
For the first time, the U.S. didn't vote against the United Nations resolution calling for an end to the Cuba embargo.
"Today, the United States will abstain," said U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power.
In recent years, the other country to vote against ending the embargo was the U.S.' close ally, Israel. In 2016, Israel also followed our lead and abstained from the vote.
Clearly, those votes didn't have any practical impact on the embargo. But sitting out the U.N. vote is just the latest change in the U.S.' attitude toward Cuba.
The tide started to turn in 2014 when President Obama announced the U.S. would restore diplomatic relations with Cuba.
"Abstaining on this resolution does not mean that the United States agrees with all of the policies and practices of the Cuban government. ... We have found a way to discuss these issues in a respectful and reciprocal manner," Power said during her speech to the U.N. General Assembly.
The Obama administration supports fully lifting the Cuba embargo, but that is up to Congress.
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