Cuba fights illicit drug trafficking and the United States knows it

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs denounces accusations of drug trafficking by Cuba and Venezuela, published in Newsweek magazine and attributed to a high-ranking official in the U.S. Department of Defense

Photo: Yahily Hernández Porto

Cuba’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Minrex) sent a communiqué to the United States embassy in Havana, denouncing a claim published in Newsweek magazine, in an article dated April 3, 2020, by a “senior official” of the United States Department of Defense, according to which the U.S. intelligence community has evidence “that drug shipments have taken place between Venezuela and Cuba.”

The text of the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs states, “This statement, if it was made, contrasts sharply with the content of the 2020 “Report on the International Narcotics Control Strategy,” published by the State Department, in which it is recognized that “Cuba is not a major consumer, producer or transit point for illicit drugs,” that “domestic production and consumption … continue to be low due to active surveillance, strict sentences and national prevention and public information programs,” and that “Cuba dedicates significant resources to reduce the availability of illicit drugs and their use, and regional traffickers generally avoid Cuba.”

Minrex adds that the same report recognizes the positive results of efforts by Cuban authorities to reduce the supply of drugs and prevent traffickers from establishing a foothold in the country.

The communiqué cites Cuba’s international cooperation in combating illicit drug trafficking and the many official bilateral agreements signed, including one with the United States, emphasizing that, under this agreement, authorities in the two countries regularly share information and coordinate responses in this arena.

“The U.S. government and its specialized agencies have more than enough information to deny the defamatory claims made by a “senior official” of the Defense Department, plenty of evidence to reaffirm that the Newsweek report is untrue, fully aware that Cuba has a zero tolerance policy against drug trafficking and actively participates in regional and global initiatives and programs to confront the consumption of narcotics,” the communiqué dated April 13, 2020, concludes.

Source: Granma