For the first time ever, the US has abstained from the UN vote denouncing the ongoing US embargo of Cuba. The resolution passed through the general assembly 191-0, with the US and Israel the only ones abstaining.
The UN has been voting overwhelmingly against the embargo for decades, but it is only in the past year that President Obama has started to criticize the embargo himself, and has sought to ease a lot of the long-standing restrictions on the island nation.
The matter is hugely politically contentious within the US, however, with many in the Republican Congress condemning the White House for easing the restrictions, and the Congressional leadership so far preventing any more easing of the restrictions on commerce.
The UN resolution itself is non-binding, and the real significance is not that it passed, but rather that the US abstained, which while reflecting the administration’s position is unusual, as it criticizes the US Congress internationally.
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