“Pope John Paul II has attacked the American embargo on Cuba as ‘deplorable’. In a letter to the Cuban youth he said the embargo affected the most needy in society. But he added that the 35-year-old embargo was not responsible for all Cuba’s troubles. He criticised such sanctions as ‘always deplorable because they hurt the most needy’. The letter was handed to a delegation of Catholic youths at a Mass in Camaguey, 500 kilometres (300 miles) south east of Havana. He did not read it aloud but a papal spokesman, Joaquin Navarro-Valls, said the Pope would be more outspoken regarding the embargo in speeches before leaving Cuba on Sunday. …He said: ‘What can I say to you, young people of Cuba, who live under material conditions which are sometimes difficult, who are sometimes frustrated in your legitimate aspirations and are even deprived of hope itself? Resist every temptation to flee from the world and from society.’” [Con Embargo]

“Pope attacks American embargo,” BBC News, January 23, 1998