Fidel Castro appeared on national television, condemned Mexican President Vicent Fox, called him a liar, and released a tape of a telephone conversation between himself and Fox to prove his point. The tape revealed the secret of Fidel Castro’s hasty departure from the UN summit, which took place this March in Mexico’s Monterrey. Castro realized after this step that diplomatic relations had been stopped.
The situation is as follows. Castro claimed at the end of the March, clarifying his early departure from the conference, that he had left due to the position of the Mexican president. As Castro declared, President Fox forced him to leave the conference in connection with the coming arrival of American President George Bush. Mexico’s officials and the USA rejected those assertions, saying that noone put any pressure on Castro and that it was &to=http://english.pravda.ru/main/2002/03/29/27247.html' target=_blank>Castro’s personal initiative. Then, the Cuban leader decided to release the tape of the private conversation.
Pursuant to that tape, Fox asked Castro to leave and not to attack either the USA or Bush “so that you don't make Friday complicated for me" (Bush was scheduled to arrive on Friday).
Now, Castro is ready to resign if someone proves that there was no such conversation and that the tape was a fake. Mexico perceives Castro's behavior rather ironically: “Such anecdotes and episodes cannot affect diplomatic relations with Cuba,” – Fox’s administration believes.
We would like to say in this respect that no matter which position the Mexican president might take on Castro, this is not a reason to make the tete-a-tete conversation between two leaders public. There are the notions of diplomatic tact and political correctness, but, as it seems, these notions are not for Fidel Castro, or does the end justify the means? As a matter of fact, one may understand Castro’s dissatisfaction with Fox’s policy, taking into consideration the fact that Mexico voted to the support of the anti-Cuban revolution at the recent session of the UN committee for human rights. Let us just hope that these political squabbles will never affect the traditional friendly and historic links between the people of Cuba and Mexico.
Sergey Stefanov PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov