Granma, the official newspaper of the Communist Party of Cuba, has published an article about its interpretation of the path to Cuba’s July 1, 2015, agreement with the United States to restore diplomatic relations. The author is one of its journalists, Sergio Alejandro Gómez.
Despite the difficulties of finding a way to build a new relationship after 50-plus years of estrangement, the two countries found “an indispensable set of references regarding the way forward: the Charter of the United Nations and International Law, in particular the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and [the Vienna Convention] on Consular Relations.”
The Charter was “the result of four years of intense work with the view to avoid new wars that would put humanity on the brink of annihilation.” Among its “principles and purposes are the defense of sovereign equality, the settlement of disputes by peaceful means, refraining from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any State and non-intervention in matters of domestic jurisdiction.”
“Similarly, the Charter promotes friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and the self-determination of peoples, cooperation in solving international problems and encouraging respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms of all.”
The two Vienna Conventions “establish that the customary norms of international law continue to govern any questions not expressly addressed. . . . Customary international law is the set of “practices of international subjects that are generally accepted by them as Law,” As a result, says Gomez, “no practice outside the framework of the functions of diplomatic missions as established by the Vienna Convention[s] may be lawful unless it is covered by customary international Law, and this does not cover any illicit act, contrary to the norms of the receiving State.”
Cuba and the U.S.’ “compliance with the basic principles established for all nations, can help lay the foundation for progress in this long and complex road to the full normalization of relations [between the two countries].”
I agree. This is a concise statement of the international legal framework for peaceful and proper relations between countries. Amen!
 Gómez, A guide to the complex road to normalization between Cuba and the United States, Granma (July 3, 2015).