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EFE NEWS SERVICE
Puerto Rico Asks to Be Included in U.N. Colony List
July 20, 1999
Copyright © 1999 EFE NEWS SERVICES (U.S.) INC. All Rights
Washington, July 20 (EFE).- Puerto Rico on Tuesday asked the United
States to support its inclusion in the list of U.N. colonial territories
and to withdraw the U.S. Navy from the Puerto Rican island of
Puerto Rican Gov. Pedro Rossello met Tuesday in Washington with
U.S. Deputy Secretary for International Organizations David Welch
and asked him to get his country to change its stand [stand=official
position] and allow the United Nations to take over the case of
Five days before the 101st anniversary of the U.S. invasion of
Puerto Rico, Rossello insisted that the United States must consult
the Puerto Rican people on the political future of the island,
and that the United States participate in any consultations on
changes to the political status of Puerto Rico.
The United States invaded Puerto Rico on July 25, 1898. Fifty-four
years later, it established the island's current commonwealth
status , making Puerto Rico dependent on the U.S. Congress and
Rossello said that he would welcome a Cuban initiative to bring
the issue before the U.N. General Assembly, which excluded Puerto
Rico from the list of non-autonomous countries in 1953.
Rossello also met with White House officials and U.S. congressmen
to request the withdrawal of the U.S. Navy from the Puerto Rican
island of Vieques.
Naval maneuvers in the area were suspended April 19 after several
bombs fell over a Vieques Navy Base observation post, killing
a Puerto Rican civilian employee.