Cubans walk out during Bush UN speech
UNITED NATIONS - Cuba's foreign minister walked out of the U.N. General Assembly on Tuesday in protest of President Bush's speech in which he said the "long rule of a cruel dictator is nearing its end" on the communist island.
The Cuban delegation later issued a statement saying the decision by Foreign Minister Felipe Perez Roque to leave the session was a "sign of profound rejection of the arrogant and mediocre statement by President Bush."
In his speech, Bush looked ahead to a Cuba no longer ruled by Fidel Castro, the ailing 81-year-old leader of the communist-run government.
"In Cuba, the long rule of a cruel dictator is nearing its end," Bush said. "The Cuban people are ready for their freedom. And as that nation enters a period of transition, the United Nations must insist on free speech, free assembly and, ultimately, free and competitive elections."