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Interview: China-Cuba friendship provides opportunities for development -- ambassador

A staff member transports medical supplies donated by the International Department of the Communist Party of China Central Committee in Havana, Cuba, May 6, 2020. (Photo by Joaquin Hernandez/Xinhua)

HAVANA, Nov. 24 (Xinhua) -- The special friendship between China and Cuba provides opportunities for mutual development, Chinese Ambassador to Cuba Ma Hui has said.

In a recent interview with Xinhua, Ma noted that Cuba was the first country in Latin America to establish diplomatic relations with China, saying that since the establishment of diplomatic relations 62 years ago, the two countries have always been trusting each other and standing together through thick and thin.

The special friendship between China and Cuba has become stronger over time, and the two countries will go hand in hand on the road of building socialism with their own characteristics, so as to better benefit the two countries and their people, he said.

China and Cuba firmly support each other on issues concerning each other's core interests and major concerns, Ma said.

China strongly supports the Cuban people in defending the country's sovereignty while respects Cuba's decision of building a socialist system in keeping with its national context, and China firmly opposes the six-decade-long U.S. embargo against Cuba, he said.

Cuba firmly supports the one-China principle and condemns foreign interference in China's internal affairs on issues related to Taiwan, Xinjiang, Hong Kong and human rights, the ambassador added.

Ma noted that under the guidance of leaders of the two sides, bilateral cooperation has been significantly strengthened over the past decade.

The two countries have seen expanded cooperation and exchanges in sectors including energy, agriculture, bio-pharmaceuticals, science and technology, education and culture.

Bilateral trade is also expanding, Ma said, adding that Cuban exports of rum, honey and sea products continue to gain ground in the Chinese market.

The two countries carried out effective cooperation during the COVID-19 pandemic and the Chinese side provided much-needed medical supplies to help Cuba fight against the pandemic, he said.

China and Cuba will continue to construct socialism for the benefit of their people and as "a major contribution to the future of humankind," the ambassador said. ■