On July 25, 1898, during the Spanish-American war Puerto Rico was invaded by U.S. troops. The war ended with the defeat of Spain, which had to give Puerto Rico the United States. Its residents were granted U.S. citizenship. Until now, Puerto Rico is under the control of the States, but it is not their territory. Despite the U.S. Constitutional rights are limited here and the Supreme power belongs to Congress, Puerto Rico has its own Constitution, legislative, executive and judicial branches of government. The official currency is the American dollar, and the defence of the territory is entrusted to the military forces of the United States.
Although Puerto Ricans are nominally American citizens, the people residing on the island are unable to participate in Federal elections. Social welfare programs including social security and health care ones do not apply fully to Puerto Ricans. At the same time, according to the regulations of the interstate Commerce business of the United States, Puerto Rico is guaranteed the same access to any other state, undermining the independence of the island. Puerto Rico has no opportunity to conduct foreign policy, to enter into trade agreements, to impose tariffs or to provide universal health insurance. In addition, without representation in Congress or votes in the presidential election, Puerto Ricans are still denied political rights, entrusted them by the U.S. government.
In 2000 the territory was visited by the UN Commission, which subsequently recommended giving citizens the right to self-determination. Puerto Ricans must choose their status based on three variants. The first is the consolidation of the current status. Second – joining the United States on the rights of the state. The third option is independence.
In the historic referendum in November 2012, a majority of 54% of Puerto Ricans strongly rejected the existing colonial status. Only residents of the island were allowed to participate in the referendum. If the referendum were able to participate Puerto Ricans and their descendants from the diaspora, where the idea of independence is the most popular, that figure would be significantly higher.
Despite the fact that the majority of Puerto Ricans do not support independence, the majority supports decolonization. The question of whether it will be in the form of integration with the United States as a state or sovereign association still remains unanswered.
On July 25, 1898, during the Spanish-American war Puerto Rico was invaded by U.S. troops. The war ended with the defeat of Spain, which had to give Puerto Rico the United States. Its residents were granted U.S. citizenship. Until now, Puerto Rico is under the control of the States, but it is not their territory. Despite the U.S.