Pope Francis says he did little to negotiate relations between Cuba and America, says both will gain and lose “as happens in negotiations.” Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Pope Francis on Sunday sought to downplay the Vatican's role in the historic rapprochement between Cuba and the United States, saying the Holy See had done "only small things" to facilitate the accord that led to the resumption of diplomatic relations after more than 50 years and enmity. "The process between Cuba and the United States was not a mediation, it did not have the character of a mediation," the pope said. "There was a desire that had arrived, on the other side also a desire. And then - and in this I'm telling the truth - there passed -- this was in January of last year - three months went by, and I only prayed over this. I didn't decide anything with these two who have been going on like this for 50 years," he said. Asked if Cuba risked losing part of its identity in its new relationship with the United States, he said both sides would lose something but they would also have gain. "Both will gain something and lose something as happens in negotiations. They are like that. Both will gain peace, meetings, friendship, collaboration. These they will gain. But what will they lose, I cannot imagine. But in negotiations one always wins and loses," he said. The Pope refused to be drawn on Cuba's human rights record, saying human rights were for all and that there a number of countries, including in Europe, where religious freedoms were not totally respected.