Emigrantes cubanos varados en Panamá, que el 2 de febrero fueron informados de que serían deportados a Colombia, se levantaron al día siguiente con la novedad de que tal vez podrían pedir asilo en el país centroamericano. No obstante, para algunos la noticia llegó tarde, ya habían escapado a la selva.Continue reading
El ministro de Exteriores de Rusia, Serguéi Lavrov, destacó este lunes en Moscú que las relaciones entre su país y Venezuela están al alza al recibir a su homóloga venezolana, Delcy Rodríguez, reportó EFE.
"Nuestros presidentes mantienen contactos de manera regular y funciona la comisión de alto nivel que aborda todo el espectro de la cooperación económica, comercial e inversora", dijo Lavrov al comienzo de la reunión.Continue reading
One of the landmark companies in Mayarí, Holguín, is MADEMA (Maderas Mayarí), among the largest of its kind in the country. It boasts a combine that processes wood, workshops that turn out rustic-style finished products, along with coffee plantations, and timberlands in the mountains of Nipe and Cristal, with about 1,000 employees working the land.Continue reading
La Fundación Centro de Poesía José Hierro de Madrid presenta El cristal que se desdobla (Amargord Ediciones), diarios de Lorenzo García Vega. El acto será este 8 de febrero dentro del ciclo "Panorama Literario".
Participan en la presentación Miguel Casado, Olvido García Valdés, Pablo López Carballo y Antonio José Ponte.Continue reading
Tres judocas cubanos conquistaron medallas de oro el fin de semana en lides organizadas en Bélgica, según informaron medios oficiales.
Vanessa Godínez y Kaliema Antomarchi se alzaron con la presea dorada en el Open de Arlon de judo, donde el domingo culminaron su participación seis cubanos.Continue reading
Un informe publicado este lunes por la Comisión Cubana de Derechos Humanos y Reconciliación Nacional (CCDHRN) sitúa en 478 las detenciones arbitrarias contra disidentes de toda la Isla durante el mes de enero. En el texto se señala que, durante el pasado mes, se produjeron 20 arrestos más que en diciembre de 2016.
La entidad independiente documenta "12 casos de agresiones físicas y 11 hostigamientos" a opositores, una situación que forma parte de "la política de represión intimidatoria" que "ha prevalecido en Cuba durante casi seis décadas".
La CCDHRN afirma que el movimiento Damas de Blanco sigue siendo objetivo prioritario de la represión política, aunque también llama la atención sobre "las detenciones arbitrarias y los allanamientos vandálicos contra los militantes de la Unión Patriótica Cuba (Unpacu)".
La organización opositora, con una amplia presencia en el oriente del país, ha sido víctima del "despojo de sus medios de trabajo (laptops, cámaras fotográficas, teléfonos móviles, etcétera)". Estos actos policiales han sido ejecutados "con una gran carga de odio político", puntualiza la Comisión.
El informe transmite la inquietud de la CCDHRN sobre "la situación carcelaria del doctor Eduardo Cardet, coordinador general del Movimiento Cristiano Liberación, quien acaba de ser adoptado como prisionero de conciencia por Amnistía Internacional".
[[QUOTE:Para los presos comunes "siguen empeorando las condiciones materiales y el maltrato" en las cerca de dos centenares de cárceles y campos de prisioneros existentes en la Isla]]La preocupación se extiende en torno "la detención arbitraria, durante varios días, de Karina Gálvez", miembro del consejo editorial de la revista Convivencia, acusada del delito de evasión fiscal y pendiente de un juicio. La economista fue liberada bajo fianza el pasado 17 de enero tras seis días de reclusión.
La Comisión asegura que "el número de prisioneros por motivos políticos en Cuba sigue estando por encima del centenar, de los cuales 55 son militantes activos de la Unión Patriótica de Cuba". Para los presos comunes "siguen empeorando las condiciones materiales y el maltrato" en las cerca de dos centenares de cárceles y campos de prisioneros existentes en la Isla.
El texto asegura que el Gobierno "continúa utilizando a los prisioneros como mano de obra semiesclava en diversos trabajos con fines comerciales", entre los que se incluye la "producción de carbón vegetal con destino a la exportación, principalmente hacia Europa y los Estados Unidos de América", en referencia al reciente envío de carbón de marabú a territorio estadounidense.
El pasado año la CCDHRN documentó un total de 9.940 detenciones arbitrarias, una cifra que "sitúa al Gobierno de Cuba en el primer lugar en toda Iberoamérica" a la cabeza de arrestos de este tipo, según un informe de la organización independiente.Continue reading
(Con información de agencias). -El Gobierno cubano desea mejorar aún más las relaciones con Estados Unidos durante la presidencia de Donald Trump, según contó este domingo en rueda de prensa John Hickenlooper, gobernador de Colorado, que visitó la Isla el fin de semana.
Según la agencia Reuters, Hickenlooper declaró que su percepción tras una reunión mantenida con Josefina Vidal, directora general para Estados Unidos del Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores de Cuba, es que las autoridades cubanas están "ansiosas" por tener la oportunidad de que la relación con la administración Trump "sea constructiva".
El Gobernador de Colorado dijo que Vidal y otros funcionarios del Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores son "cautelosamente optimistas".
"Se dan cuenta de que tienen que esperar y que la nueva administración tiene muchas cosas para atender. Entienden que las cosas podrían cambiar de alguna forma, pero no sentí que hubiera ningún temor", declaró el gobernador.
Hickenlooper viajó con una delegación cultural y empresarial a la Isla el pasado viernes y se ha convertido en el primer cargo público estadounidense en reunirse con Vidal desde que Donald Trump asumió el poder.
[[QUOTE:Hickenlooper viajó con una delegación cultural y empresarial a la Isla el pasado viernes y se ha convertido en el primer cargo público estadounidense en reunirse con Vidal en la era Trump]]El mismo día, el portavoz de la Casa Blanca, Sean Spicer, afirmó que Washington priorizará los derechos humanos en la "revisión completa" que está haciendo de la política estadounidense hacia Cuba.
Spicer aseguró que el presidente Trump "está comprometido con una agenda que garantice los derechos humanos para todos los ciudadanos del mundo", por lo que ese tema ocupará un lugar "principal" en la revisión de la política con Cuba.
El gobernador de Colorado también contó a la prensa que su viaje tenía como fin ver cómo estaba Cuba en la era postcastro e invitar al país a la Bienal de las Américas, organizada en su estado, que reúne a las culturas, negocios e ideas del norte y sur de América.
Hickenlooper dijo que el Gobierno de Cuba ha aceptado "con entusiasmo" la invitación para participar en el evento, que se celebrará el próximo septiembre. "La gente más joven parece ansiosa por construir una relación con Estados Unidos", resumió.Continue reading
14ymedio, Santiago de Cuba, 31 January 2017 — The movie theater with
cushy chairs, carpets and a purring projector is a thing of the
past. Now, the films are broadcast on huge flat-screen TVs or inside a
container for the transportation of goods, such as the one located on
San Miguel Street at Victoriano Garzón Avenue in Santiago de Cuba.
At the end of last year, this metal box was set up as 3D movie theater,
operated by the state. The improvised place started out as the butt of
jokes about the high temperatures in structure under the summer sun, but
now its showings play to a full room, due in part to the few
recreational options that characterize the nightlife of the area.
Marcos Luis Rondin Castro, a worker at the peculiar installation, told
Tele Turquino that the plan is to make the container mobile to "bring
the new technologies to places where the conditions for these type of
projections do not yet exist." However, the "dark box" still can't be
moved in the absence of a rolling base that the state needs to construct.
The container offers five daily showings, two for children and three for
adults over 16 years. The high demand for the service is also due to its
proximity to some of the city's 18-story apartment buildings, where
hundreds of families live. The improvised venue has a capacity for 24
spectators at a price of 10 Cuban pesos (roughly 40¢ US).
In November 2013 Raul Castro's government ordered the closure of the
private and popular movie rooms managed by self-employed worker
A worker at the Provincial Film Center, who requested anonymity,
told 14ymedio that the aim of the initiative is to displace the private
movie rooms. Although these premises were closed down by the state more
than three years ago, there are still some operating illegally.
Yoanis Maceira Robert, administrator of the 3D Room, explained to this
newspaper that the people of Santiago were "accustomed to the video
rooms that were built in different locations that no longer exist,"
which is why he hopes that the rolling cinema will be received with
In November of 2013 the government of Raúl Castro ordered the closure of
the private and popular movie rooms managed by self-employed
workers. The entrepreneurs ran the movie rooms under a license to
operate recreational equipment, but the authorities then prohibited
Source: Video Room Fits in a Container / 14ymedio – Translating Cuba -
http://translatingcuba.com/video-room-fits-in-a-container-14ymedio/ Continue reading
14ymedio, Miami, 3 February 2017 — The Ministry of Public Health
released a statement Thursday in the official newspaper Granma to
reiterate the willingness of Cuban authorities to take back health
professionals who have "defected" from medical missions abroad.
The announcement comes three weeks after the outgoing U.S. president,
Barack Obama, eliminated the Cuban Medical Professional Parole (CMPP)
program. This initiative, established during the Bush administration in
2006, facilitated the arrival in the United States of more than 8,000
Cuban doctors who were in other countries.
In 2014 the Cuban government, for the first time, offered health
professionals who had defected, or tried to, a chance to rejoin the
"This kind of offering is not new," said Yisel, a comprehensive general
practitioner who left the island in 2015 via Ecuador. "The national
health system has run out of workers because of the way they exploited
us." She currently resides in Miami.
In 2014 the Cuban government, for the first time, offered health
professionals who had defected a chance to rejoin the national
system. The following year, Granma published an extensive article where
medical personnel were guaranteed a similar job location to what they
had before leaving the country.
"Including those victims of the deceptive and vulgar practice of
brain-drain," said the Communist Party organ at that time.
"Nobody wants to return because what they offer is the same thing that
we had," explains the doctor.
Wages were raised in March 2014. Today, doctors in Cuba earn $60 a
month. However, after the massive export of health services,
professionals who remain on the island have to work double shifts in
hospitals and working conditions have significantly worsened.
"The international medical collaboration that Cuba provides has as its
principles volunteerism and the integral attention to the needs of the
personnel inside and outside the country," explains the official
note. In addition, it adds that those who work abroad "are guaranteed a
stipend, health care, food, accommodation and air and land transportation."
The Cuban government has been heavily criticized in international forums
for the conditions under which it signs agreements to contract for the
employment of its medical staff. Most of the earnings, which the
authorities acknowledged amounted to $8.2 billion in 2014, remain in the
hands of the Cuban state.
According to the note published by the official press, there are three
types of collaboration agreements: "one in which Cuba assumes the
expenses, another where it shares them with the receiving country and
the third in which they are paid."
The Ministry of Health explains that the resources obtained from the
work of the doctors are used to support the national health system and
offset the expenses of Cuban solidarity missions.
The note does not mention the twenty Cuban health professionals who are
in immigration limbo in Colombia after escaping medical missions without
knowing about the suspension of the CMPP.
Hundreds more awaited the processing of their refugee applications in
other countries and await an American US visa in precarious conditions.
Currently, more than 50,000 Cuban health workers are spread across 60
countries in missions mandated by the Government.
Source: Government Invites Doctors Who Fled To Return To Cuba / 14ymedio
– Translating Cuba -
http://translatingcuba.com/government-invites-doctors-who-fled-to-return-to-cuba-14ymedio/ Continue reading
Juan Juan Almeida, 23 January 2017 — At nine at night on 19 January in
the Pueblo Nuevo neighborhood in the eastern province of Holguin,
suddenly out of nothing there was a bustling scene of police chase going
after a Cuban citizen and three foreigners, carrying cocaine in a white
car with tourism plates.
"On Thursday afternoon there was an alert about an exchange of gunfire
between unknown subjects very close to the Damian River in Yareyal. The
police responded but the subjects had already absconded," says a person
who unwittingly was a witness, and very kindly sent us a sketch of the
route followed by the cars during the raid.
The pursuit began in Yareyal People's Council, a little village between
Las Tunas and Holguin, next to the Central Highway, shortly after a
patrol car located the suspect vehicle heading toward Holguin.
Apparently, members of the anti-drug group suspected that the site was
being used by criminal gangs as a repeat hideout for drug shipments and
so they had set up a technical-police detection device.
After the accident on the Central Highway, and after having put the
drivers, residents and passers-by on this route in danger daily, the
pursuers turned at the corner of K Street with Juan Morena and continued
fleeing on foot.
"That shows they were not from here, and didn't know the area. On K
Street, where they decided to get out of the car and take off running,
they were surrounded because it's a dead-end alley and so they caught
them. They practically surrendered," said a person from Holguin, a
neighbor who lives on Juan Moreno Street.
"They were hot on the heels of the three guys, they let the tourist car
crash and with several bullet holes in the bad. The gunfire was set,
they got out of the car, ran toward K Street and there some armed and
hooded guards caught them, like in the American films.
"They took the pistols, and then let the dogs loose and they immediately
found the drugs in the trunk and under the seats. They took out several
packets which I assume were narcotics. They didn't allow me to take
photos, I took out my cellphone but they set up a security cordon and
didn't let me get close."
The suspected traffickers were arrested, they still haven't identified
them, and they're being held at a detention center on the outskirts of
Holguin province. These sites, which are scattered through the country,
and fulfill common and police functions they call "All the World Sings."
Source: Police in Holguin Pursue a Cuban and Three Foreigners / Juan
Juan Almeida – Translating Cuba -
http://translatingcuba.com/police-in-holguin-pursue-a-cuban-and-three-foreigners-juan-juan-almeida/ Continue reading
Fernando Damaso, 5 February 2017 — To say that the history of Cuba has
been manipulated over the last 58 years is nothing original. Subjected
to "ideological accommodation," with the objective of using it for the
narrow interests of the established power, important people and events
have been ignored or misrepresented, and others that are insignificant
have been elevated to much greater importance. Also they have elevated,
much more than warranted, the thinking and actions of some questionable
figures, for the sole intention of holding onto power way too long, to
the extreme of comparing them advantageously with truly important
The most mistreated and manipulated has been Jose Marti, who has been
credited with events he was never responsible for and even named a
"great disciple," sometimes considered greater than he was. In addition,
they have assigned him, in his historic journey, an annoying and
undesirable traveling companion, resulting in concentrating "his
thinking, the disposition of Cespedes, the machete of Maceo, the
delivery of Agramonte and the force of Gomez," something unheard of and
never before seen in Cuba, not even in the darkest days of Machado, when
he was considered "the eminent one" and the unbridled praise of his
The founding fathers of the nation were always respected by the
government of the day, and were never politicized, as happens now. It
could be due to the lack of real values in the current figures.
It seems that some historians, in their eagerness to enjoy some of the
few crumbs offered by power, have lost respect and have forgotten that,
in the end, "History will not absolve them, either."*
*Translator's note: A reference to Fidel Castro's statement "Go ahead,
condemn me, history will absolve me" which he is said to have
declared at his trial for the attack on the Moncada Barracks, an event
which is considered the start of the revolution, although it failed and
Fidel Castro was imprisoned for his part in it.
Source: Manipulation and Manipulators / Fernando Dámaso – Translating
http://translatingcuba.com/manipulation-and-manipulators-fernando-dmaso/ Continue reading
La Comisión Cubana de Derechos Humanos y Reconciliación Nacional (CCDHRN) denunció al menos 478 detenciones arbitrarias en enero de 2017, 20 más que en el anterior mes de diciembre.
En el informe mensual al que tuvo acceso DIARIO DE CUBA, la CCDHRN documentó 12 casos de agresiones físicas y 11 de hostigamiento a otros tantos opositores, "como parte de la política de represión intimidatoria contra opositores no violentos que ha prevalecido en Cuba durante casi seis décadas".Continue reading
Harriet Baskas, Special to CNBC
Last week, the newly inaugurated Trump administration warned it was in
the middle of a "full review" of U.S. policy toward Cuba—prompting new
questions about how committed President Donald Trump will be to the
political and cultural thaw began under his predecessor.
However, uncertainty over Trump's Cuba policy did not prevent American
Airlines from opening a ticket office in Havana this week, a mere two
months after the carrier flew the first scheduled commercial flight from
the U.S. to Havana since 1961.
American's new outpost in Cuba underscores how both U.S. fliers and air
carriers are rushing to make the most of the first real opening between
the two countries in decades—despite lingering questions about whether
that thaw will continue in the Trump era.
"We cannot speculate about what [Trump's] next step will be, but I can
assure you that we are moving our machine forward," said Galo Beltran,
Cuba manager for American Airlines told the Associated Press, "You are a
witness to the investment and how important Cuba is to American as a
U.S. entity doing business."
American began flying to Havana from Miami and Charlotte in late
November, and from Miami to five other Cuban cities in September. After
a mid-February 'schedule adjustment' that drops one of two daily flights
between Miami and three cities (Holguin, Santa Clara and Varadero),
American will be operating 10 daily flights to six Cuban cities.
Other U.S. airlines competed for the go-ahead to offer service to Havana
and other Cuban cities. These include Delta (which in November was the
first U.S. airline to open a ticket office in Havana), Spirit, United,
Alaska, JetBlue and Southwest, all of which are sticking with their
original flight schedules.
"Myriad external forces govern the climate in which we operate – prices
of energy, labor," said Brad Hawkins, spokesman for Southwest Airlines,
which currently operates a dozen daily roundtrips between Cuba and the
U.S.. As of right now, "Our Cuba flights are performing in-line with our
JetBlue reported the same.
"Cuba routes are performing as expected," said JetBlue spokesman Philip
Stewart, "As has been the case since we completed all of our route
launches last fall, we continue to operate nearly 50 roundtrips between
the U.S. and Cuba every week on six unique routes."
As one would expect from tourists prohibited from visiting a cultural
Mecca for decades, many U.S. visitors who now fly to Havana join walking
tours through the city's old quarters, take rides in restored vintage
cars and visit the Presidential Palace (home of the Revolutionary
Museum), Hemingway's House and the studios of local artists.
Members of a 50-person delegation of political, business and cultural
leaders who joined Seattle-based Alaska Airlines in January, as part of
the first regularly scheduled flight between Los Angeles and Havana,
indulged in the same.
At the same time, they engaged with their Cuban counterparts, exchanging
ideas and business links.
Stephanie Bowman and other commissioners from the Port of Seattle, which
operates Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and an assortment of
cruise and marine terminals, met with the Cuban Minister of Trade and
Foreign Investment and the Cuban Port Authority.
"We learned that with the lessening of trade restrictions and the
increase in tourism they have huge challenges in infrastructure
development, everything from roads and hotels to being able to provide
enough food for everyone," said Bowman. She suggested the Port of
Seattle host some Cuban executives in Seattle "so they can observe our
cruise and airport business and take some best practices back."
'I want to have a horse to ride'
Kevin Mather, president & COO of the Seattle Mariners, didn't meet with
Cuban baseball officials or players while in Havana. However, he did
bring a suitcase full of t-shirts, whiffle balls and other Mariners
promotional items to hand out to baseball fans in a downtown Havana plaza.
Mather recognized that scouting for potential players in Cuba is a
touchy subject right now, but he's confident that eventually Cuban
baseball leagues and the American Major League Baseball will have an
"And when the gate opens and the race starts, I want to have a horse to
ride," said Mather. He instructed his office to retain scouts and people
well-versed in the Cuban economy "so that when the day comes we can react."
That "hurry up and wait" lesson is being learned by members of cultural,
business, tourism and trade missions heading to Cuba from a variety of
U.S cities, said Janet Moore, president of Distant Horizons, which
organizes the on-the-ground details for many delegations.
Once in Cuba, "They quickly realize that it's not quite so
straight-forward and that until the Trade Embargo is lifted, doing
business with Cuba comes with an enormous set of regulations," said Moore.
"So feelers are being put out there and relationships forged, but at
this point concrete steps are more difficult," she added.
—Harriet Baskas is the author of seven books, including "Hidden
Treasures: What Museums Can't or Won't Show You," and the Stuck at the
Airport blog. Follow her on Twitter at @hbaskas . Follow Road Warrior at
Source: Trump's warnings grow, but so are travelers and flights to Cuban
http://www.cnbc.com/2017/02/03/trumps-warnings-grow-but-so-are-travelers-and-flights-to-cuban-soil.html Continue reading