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Monthly Archives: March 2017

Las principales organizaciones de la oposición cubana han alertado este viernes de que las vidas de tres disidentes que llevan 24 días en huelga de hambre, en señal de protesta por las condenas en su contra por delitos de difamación, "corren grave peligro". Continue reading

La combatiente de las luchas clandestinas y del Ejército Rebelde María Antonia Figueroa Araujo falleció la noche del jueves, a los 98 años de edad, a consecuencia de un shock medular, informó el sitio oficial Cubadebate.

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Cubanet, Miriam Celaya, Havana, 29 March 2017 – An opinion piece published in recent days by El Nuevo Herald gives me a disturbing feeling of déjà vu. It is not the subject – overflowing with a number of articles by different authors – but its focal point, which presents as adequate a number of superficial … Continue reading "The Thousand Faces of “Journalism” / Miriam Celaya" Continue reading

La ONU expresó hoy su "grave preocupación" por la decisión del Tribunal Supremo de Justicia de Venezuela de asumir las competencias de la Asamblea Nacional y le pidió que lo reconsidere, en vista de que "la separación de poderes es esencial para que la democracia funcione".

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La Fundación para los Derechos Humanos en Cuba (FDHC) lanzó este viernes en Miami su nuevo programa artístico Artistas Pro Derechos y envió un mensaje contundente a los “represores” del … Click to Continue » Continue reading

Trabajadores privados que tienen licencias de vendedores de discos y distribuyen el llamado "Paquete semanal" en San Germán, Holguín, fueron citados y amenazados por autoridades provinciales, según denunciaron.

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Sus declaraciones sorprenden tanto a oficialistas como a opositores Continue reading

"El régimen cubano se ha visto implicado en la desaparición de al menos 147 personas y posiblemente miles más", denuncia Archivo Cuba en un informe publicado este 29 de marzo.

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¿Quién era aquel periodista judío-cubano-francés, exiliado, re-exiliado y mil veces repudiado? Continue reading
Cuba service recently with the launch of its first-ever flights to Havana … in Havana, Cienfuegos and Santiago de Cuba. In small ship news, Cuba cruises …  Havana and Santiago de Cuba and includes a two-night hotel stay in Havana, complete with guided Tauck sightseeing.   Stay tuned to our CubaContinue reading
… with Trump to bring up Cuba. "I've spoken … ;strategically." "If the Cuban government is going to behave … repression." The topic of Cuba came up last week during … Continue reading
… films being shown at the Havana Film Festival New York, the … en la Habana (Vampires in Havana) is a hilariously funny animation … of the myths about Cuba and the Cuban people that showcases their … the country. The New York Havana Film Festival runs from March … Continue reading

Los hermanos Anairis y Adairis Miranda y Fidel Batista Leyva, prisioneros por su activismo contra el régimen en Holguín, se encuentran hospitalizados en la provincia.

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… films being shown at the Havana Film Festival New York, the … en la Habana (Vampires in Havana) is a hilariously funny animation … of the myths about Cuba and the Cuban people that showcases their … the country. The New York Havana Film Festival runs from March … Continue reading

La Fundación para los Derechos Humanos en Cuba dio inicio hoy en Miami a una expo-venta de artistas solidarios con la causa de los derechos humanos.  Entre sus actividades, se celebró una conferencia de prensa de Odalys Sanabria, vocera en el exterior del Movimiento Dignidad, fundado el pasado 15 de enero en la Isla.

En su conferencia de prensa, Sanabria trazó un grafiti: una D.

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Mientras transcurre la cita oficial, otra ‘underground’ cuenta con autores contestatarios e imprescindibles Continue reading
HAVANA, Cuba, Mar 31 (ACN) Theodor Friedrich, … the United Nations (FAO) in Cuba, advocated sustainable agriculture in this … . He emphasized at the VI Cuban Congress of Local Development, which … transmissible diseases. At the 6th Cuban Congress of Local Development, the … Continue reading
… to undergo surgery Friday in Cuba to remove a small, benign … Cochabamba for a flight to Cuba after midnight Friday and the … Havana, said Rene Martinez, Bolivian presidential minister, in a statement on Cuban … traveled with Morales to the Cuban capital. Earlier this week, Bolivian … Continue reading
Sin que medie un aviso a los familiares Continue reading
… with Trump to bring up Cuba. "I've spoken … ;strategically." "If the Cuban government is going to behave … repression."  The topic of Cuba came up last week during … Continue reading

El presidente de El Salvador, Salvador Sánchez Cerén, condecoró este jueves a la exbailarina Alicia Alonso, con la Orden Libertador Esclavos José Simeon Cañas, en el grado de Gran Oficial, la máxima según dio a conocer la agencia oficial Prensa Latina.

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The auction will be held by Archives International Auctions, at their offices in Fort Lee, N.J..Featuring rare coins & banknotes from China and the Middle East FORT LEE, NEW JERSEY, UNITED STATES, March 31, 2017 /EINPresswire.com/ -- The … Continue reading

La fiscal general de Venezuela, Luisa Ortega, denunció este viernes sorpresivamente una "ruptura del orden constitucional" en su país, tras fallos del Tribunal Supremo, que asumió las funciones del Asamblea Nacional y retiró la inmunidad a los diputados, reporta la AFP.

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En la gravísima hora que vive el país sudamericano, los militares deberían alinearse y defender la Constitución Continue reading

El Gobierno español nombró este viernes como embajador en Cuba al diplomático Juan José Buitrago, hasta ahora jefe de gabinete del titular de Asuntos Exteriores, Alfonso Dastis, reporta EFE.

Buitrago sustituye a Juan Francisco Montalbán al frente de la embajada española en La Habana.

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La publicación pertenece al ICLEP Continue reading
Se trata de la primera funcionaria venezolana de alto nivel que critica las decisiones del Tribunal Supremo de Justicia Continue reading
Cualquier aventurero extranjero tiene mejores posibilidades que el más esforzado emprendedor del patio
Tres lanzadores de la Isla han obtenido la agencia libre Continue reading

Diplomáticos de la Unión Europea (UE) visitaron el Centro de Estudios Convivencia (CEC) y su revista en Pinar del Río este jueves, según dio a conocer el propio centro en una nota en su página de Facebook.

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Diplomáticos de la UE visitan el Centro de Estudios Convivencia en Pinar del Río DDC | Pinar del Río | 31 de Marzo de 2017 – 17:04 CEST. | Diplomáticos de la Unión Europea (UE) visitaron el Centro de Estudios Convivencia (CEC) y su revista en Pinar del Río este jueves, según dio a conocer […] Continue reading
El régimen ‘roba’ 1.300 pesos y 178 dólares destinados al Proyecto Humanitario Juan Pablo II DDC | Baracoa | 31 de Marzo de 2017 – 16:28 CEST. Fuerzas del régimen detuvieron en la noche de este jueves al activista Francisco Luis Manzanet Ortiz, y le “robaron” 178 CUC y 1.300 pesos moneda nacional destinado al […] Continue reading
La crisis en Venezuela ha provocado la medida, aún no oficial Continue reading
El Gobierno español nombra a Juan José Buitrago embajador en La Habana AGENCIAS | La Habana | 31 de Marzo de 2017 – 17:57 CEST. El Gobierno español nombró este viernes como embajador en Cuba al diplomático Juan José Buitrago, hasta ahora jefe de gabinete del titular de Asuntos Exteriores, Alfonso Dastis, reporta EFE. Buitrago […] Continue reading
… how Cuban immigrant Casimiro Hernandez Sr. made the perfect Tampa Cuban sandwich … a little bit, blinking quickly. Cuban sandwiches can make people emotional … long Cuban loaves are different than the squattier ones in Cuba, the … ) 892-2293. Follow @lreiley. South Koreans, Cuban sandwiches and the Columbia restaurant … Continue reading

Fuerzas del régimen detuvieron en la noche de este jueves al activista Francisco Luis Manzanet Ortiz, y le "robaron" 178 CUC y 1.300 pesos moneda nacional destinado al Proyecto Humanitario Juan Pablo II, según denunció él mismo a DIARIO DE CUBA.

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Joanne Chesimard aún se refugia en la isla Continue reading
Hit by Venezuela shortage, Cuba to restrict premium gasoline sales
By REUTERS
PUBLISHED: 00:03 BST, 31 March 2017 | UPDATED: 00:03 BST, 31 March 2017
By Sarah Marsh and Nelson Acosta

HAVANA, March 30 (Reuters) - Cuba will stop selling premium grade
gasoline except to tourists starting Saturday due to a fuel crunch
affecting Venezuela, its oil-rich ally and key trading partner.

Cuba's leadership has yet to announce the measure publicly, but a
government source confirmed the contents of an official memo that has
circulated on social media outlets this week.

The memo has already been "sent by official means to those implicated,"
said the source, who was unauthorized to speak to about the matter and
requested anonymity.

Cuba has become increasingly reliant on Venezuela for refined oil
products, even as the latter wrestles with shortages of those products
at home. Last week, Venezuela faced its first nationwide shortage of
motor fuel in five years.

The OPEC nation has one of the world's largest crude reserves but must
import components for motor fuels and products crucial to dilute its
extra heavy oil. Payment delays to providers have delayed deliveries.

Cuba cannot easily replace Venezuelan supplies as these are subsidized
and the Communist-ruled island is strapped for cash.

Most vehicles in Cuba, including its vintage American cars and
Soviet-era Ladas, use regular fuel. But modern cars, belonging to state
and joint ventures as well as diplomats and other foreigners, run on
higher-octane, so-called special fuel or premium.

"CUPET will not be delivering special fuel throughout April," said the
memo, circulating on social media.

"The special fuel remaining in stock at the gas stations from April 1
will only be sold ... to tourists, until the inventory is depleted,"
added the memo, using the acronym of the state oil monopoly CubaPetroleo.

One diplomat based in Havana said embassy workers had been advised to
stock up on special fuel now and to carpool.

"Special fuel is going to disappear," said Victor, a worker at a gas
station in the business district of Vedado. "We have a small reserve
left, but we aren't supplying any."

The government memo suggested motorists replace premium with regular
grade fuel. But a worker at a joint venture, which received the memo
through official channels, said an auto service provider had recommended
against using regular in its Mercedes-Benz cars.

"It is bad for the engines," she said. "But what can you do, if there is
no special fuel?" (Additional Reporting by Marc Frank in Havana and
Marianna Parraga in Houston)

Source: Hit by Venezuela shortage, Cuba to restrict premium gasoline
sales | Daily Mail Online -
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/reuters/article-4366410/Hit-Venezuela-shortage-Cuba-restrict-premium-gasoline-sales.html Continue reading
Port of Seattle hopes to help out Cuban ports
Glenn Farley, KING 7:30 PM. PDT March 30, 2017

As Cuba develops its ports, the Port of Seattle hopes to be a role model.

In January, Port of Seattle commissioners and its then chief executive
met with Cuban transportation officials in Havana. The occasion was the
opening of the first direct west coast service to Cuba by SeaTac based
Alaska Airlines.

"I think there's a real opportunity to bring executives from Cuba to
Port of Seattle to learn best practices, to learn about the airport, the
seaport, and the cruise business," said Port Commissioner Stephanie
Bowman. "A little known fact people don't really recall...Cuba was the
number one importer of peas and lentils before the embargo."

The Port of Seattle considers itself to be unique with a cargo seaport,
cruise ship terminals, and a large airport all under one government
entity. The Port of Seattle says it can offer help and guidance in any
one of those areas.

"They're looking to becoming a major trans shipment point for the
Caribbean. And that's where we can offer our expertise, on the marine
cargo side of the business," Bowman said.

"They're in a very tough place. They're dying for foreign investment,"
said Commissioner Fred Felleman, who was also on the trip. "They want to
open their doors, and we want to help them do that. Meanwhile, they
don't have the infrastructure in place to absorb that crush."

The crush Felleman and many Cubans are concerned about is what if the
nearly six decade old series of economic embargoes placed on the
regime of Fidel Castro were to quickly go away and open the island's
economy to an on rush of American tourists. Politically, the U.S. and
Cuba have been on opposite poles since the 1959 communist revolution,
even though the island is just 90 miles away from Florida.

Felleman, a longtime Seattle-based environmentalist, particularly in the
area of marine mammals, says the Port of Seattle's environmental
initiatives could help the Cubans manage that impact.

"Sustainable development is the only way these guys can prosper for the
long haul," Felleman said. "I think they understand they have something
very special. The question is, can they get in front of the curve?"

In 2014, relations between Cuba and the United States grew closer with
the re-establishment of embassies in both capitals and installations of
ambassadors. The so called "embargo," which is actually a series of
sanctions, is still in place, but with special permissions and licensing
arrangements issued by the U.S. government. There has been growing
levels of business interaction with Cuba.

Now, what will the new administration of President Donald Trump do?
Thus far, the administration has said little about Cuba other than
it's being studied. During the campaign, candidate Trump made statements
that ranged from vowing to undo the Obama administration's opening to
saying that 50 years of sanctions was enough.

Source: Port of Seattle hopes to help out Cuban ports | KING5.com -
http://www.king5.com/money/port-of-seattle-hopes-to-help-out-cuban-ports/427038904 Continue reading
Cuba is top country for U.S. visa refusals worldwide
Despite grim prospect, Cubans make sacrifices to apply for U.S. visa
By Hatzel Vela - Reporter
Posted: 6:21 PM, March 30, 2017

HAVANA - Cuba remains among the top countries for U.S. Visa refusals.

After the "wet foot, dry foot" policy allowing Cubans who managed to
arrive to the U.S. without a visa to stay came to an end Jan. 12., the
majority of Cubans who applied for a visa were denied.

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Despite the grim prospect of a nearly 82 percent rate of denial,
according to the U.S. Department of State, Cubans were still vying for a
chance to come to the U.S.

Ana Maria Chiroles was among dozens who were recently standing in line
in front of the U.S. Embassy in Havana to apply for a tourist visa.

"I have my grandchildren there and my son," Chiroles said. She added
that a "little piece" of her heart was in the U.S.

Chiroles' brother Juan Chiroles, said they have no intention of staying
in the U.S., so the two traveled to Havana from Artemisa to test their
luck. Chilores said he owns a bakery, land and cattle. He has no need to
move, he said. They risked $160 each on application fees.

"I think there is a possibility because I am not a possible immigrant,"
a hopeful Juan Chiroles said.

Last year, travelers from Cuba faced a lower possibility of getting a
visa than any other country in the world, according to data from the
U.S. Department. The possibility was less likely for Cubans than it was
for travelers from countries with U.S. travel warnings related to
terrorism in Afghanistan and Maurtania.

After waiting for hours, Chiroles siblings walked out of the U.S.
embassy heart broken. Their visa request was denied.

Source: Cuba is top country for U.S. visa refusals worldwide -
http://www.local10.com/news/cuba/cuba-is-top-country-for-us-visa-refusals-worldwide Continue reading
Lack of cash clouds Cuba's green energy outlook
By Sarah Marsh | CIRO REDONDO, CUBA

Cuba, battling a chronic energy deficit, has all the sunshine, wind and
sugar to fuel what should be a booming renewables sector - if only it
could find the money.

The country's first utility-scale renewable energy project, a biomass
plant in Ciro Redondo, is finally under construction thanks to an
injection of funds from China, a socialist ally and in recent years, the
communist-led island's merchant bank of last resort.

Turning Cuba's renewables potential into reality has become a state
priority over the past year since crisis-stricken ally Venezuela slashed
subsidized oil shipments to Cuba that were supposed to help power its
traditional plants.

Some foreign players in green energy, such as Spain's Gamesa and
Germany's Siemens, have shown early interest in the country. But the
overall paucity of foreign financing means that this project, being
carried out by Cuban-British joint venture Biopower, is still the
exception rather than the rule.

The financing puzzle is a crucial one to solve if cash-strapped Cuba is
to hit its target of renewables filling 24 percent of its energy needs
by 2030, up from 4 percent today, a strategy that would require billions
of dollars in investment.

The government announced last July it was rationing energy, raising
fears of a return to the crippling blackouts of the "Special Period"
after the collapse of the Soviet Union. The energy shortage comes at a
time when growing tourism and private business creation are generating
greater demand.

"The most challenging thing we have had to deal with in the last six
years of developing this project has been the financing," said Biopower
President Andrew Macdonald, while touring the site of the Ciro Redondo
plant.

The Scotsman, who has been doing business with Cuba for more than a
decade, said the U.S. blockade had "strangled" funding from Europe "and
other obvious sources", with banks afraid of sanctions.

His start-up Havana Energy joined forces with a subsidiary of domestic
sugar monopoly Azcuba to create Biopower in 2012, with a contract to
build five plants attached to sugar mills.

The plants are projected to use sugar cane byproduct bagasse and
fast-growing woody weed marabu as biofuels, costing around $800 million
to add some 300 MW to the grid.

Biopower was finally able this year to start building the first one,
thanks to a decision by China's Shanghai Electric Group Ltd to buy an
equity stake in Havana Energy. The JV is now looking for external
financing for the next four plants.

"We have to check whether the funders are open for the Cuban market or
not," said Zhengyue Chen, former investment manager at Shanghai Electric
and current Biopower chief financial officer.

RISKY INVESTMENT

Some international companies have shown an interest in gaining a
foothold in the slowly opening Cuban market, encouraged by a three-year
old investment law that allows full foreign ownership of renewables
projects.

Cuba last year signed a deal with Spain's Gamesa for the construction of
seven wind-powered plants and with Siemens for the upgrade of the
creaking power grid.

These are just preliminary agreements, however, which may not become
concrete contracts, Western diplomats based in Havana say, given
difficulty agreeing on a financing framework and actually securing the
funds.

On top of the U.S. trade embargo, which frightens banks from offering
Cuba loans, Cuba's payment capacity is questionable. While it has
improved its debt servicing record under President Raul Castro, it is
falling behind on paying foreign providers.

And it has little to offer as payment guarantees in hard currency. Its
state electricity utility generates revenue in Cuban pesos, which are
not traded internationally, only into convertible Cuban pesos at a
state-fixed rate. The government has promised to unify those two
currencies, but it is unclear how.

"If no currency indexation is provided from the government, significant
devaluation poses a great threat to investors' revenue," said World Bank
renewable energy expert Yao Zhao.

Moreover Cuba does not belong to multilateral institutions like the
Inter-American Development Bank that could provide external guarantees.

CHINESE FUNDING

That is likely to force further reliance on China, already Cuba's top
creditor in recent years, having offered loans as a way to hike trade
with the island. Shanghai Electric is importing and building the Ciro
Redondo plant, as well as helping finance it.

Project Manager Li Hui, already directing excavators shifting earth on
site, said he will stay on after the factory is built as the head of the
company's first branch in Cuba.

"We will hand them over a fully-functioning power plant," he said,
adding that Shanghai Electric had to bring over new building equipment
because the Cuban ones were antiquated and lacked spare parts.

But even Chinese largesse may have its limits. Chen said Biopower was
now in discussions with overseas funders, mainly from Europe, and hoped
to secure commercial funds for the second plant by the end of this year.

Macdonald said he hoped his project would be part of the launch of many
foreign participations in the energy sector.

"But today, we are still pioneers," he said.

(Editing by Christian Plumb and Edward Tobin)

Source: Lack of cash clouds Cuba's green energy outlook | Reuters -
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-cuba-energy-idUSKBN1720EB Continue reading
Editorial: Holding the Repressors Accountable
DDC | Madrid | 31 de Marzo de 2017 - 04:08 CEST.

Both off and on the Island, in recent weeks several successful actions
have been taken against State-perpetrated violence.

Composed of lawyers, professors, human rights activists and political
and student leaders of several Latin American countries, a new
organization was announced: the International Commission for the
Investigation of Crimes against Humanity by the Castro Regime. Dedicated
in its first stage to documenting and investigating violations, it will
organize public hearings in various capitals and advocate for the
creation of an international tribunal to investigate these crimes.

In Havana, a delegation of the Ladies in White submitted to the Attorney
General of the Republic a detailed analysis of the repression suffered
by the women's movement from 2016 to 2017. The report was also presented
to the delegation of the European Union (EU) and the Apostolic
Nunciature, and in the next few days will be sent to the Military
Prosecutor's Office, the State Council and various embassies.

In Washington the Citizens for Racial Integration Committee provided the
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights with a report covering the 187
cases of human rights violations of Afro-Cuban citizens. This report
will serve as the basis for efforts by various activists in their
dealings with Cuban authorities.

Also in the US, at the University of California Irvine (UCI) School of
Law, a group of independent journalists and activists from the Island
offered the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression first-hand
information on violations of this right. The group met with teachers and
students, and advised the Special Rapporteur to insist on his request
for an authorization to visit Cuba.

Meanwhile, at its last meeting the UN Committee against Enforced
Disappearances raised objections to the official Cuban report, called
for the Island's authorities to ratify the Optional Protocol to the
Convention against Torture and the International Covenant on Civil and
Political Rights, and to recognize the International Criminal Court. It
also pointed out the fact that the Government does not currently
recognize the legitimacy of any human rights organizations in Cuba.

All this activity comes in addition to the sustained work, on and off
the Island, by organizations such as the Cuban Commission for Human
Rights and National Reconciliation, Archivo Cuba, the Foundation for
Human Rights in Cuba, the Cuban Human Rights Observatory, and Cubalex.

It is not just a question of documenting and publicizing each of the
violations and crimes, but holding the regime's representatives and
institutions accountable for their repressive and criminal record. The
joint work by international and Cuban organizations, although not
officially recognized, serves to pressure the repressors and serve
notice that their crimes are being methodically recorded and will not go
unpunished.

In recent months State-sponsored violence against opposition activists
and independent journalists has increased, but also growing and
strengthening are means and instruments to peacefully resist such
violence, and to keep the truth about our most recent history alive.

Source: Editorial: Holding the Repressors Accountable | Diario de Cuba -
http://www.diariodecuba.com/derechos-humanos/1490926100_30042.html Continue reading
Juan José Buitrago fungía como jefe de gabinete del titular de Asuntos Exteriores Continue reading
14ymedio, Marcelo Hernandez, Havana, 30 March 2017 – After more than three months of being excluded from the Havana Film Festival, the movie Hands of Stone will be shown at La Rampa cinema in the Cuban capital. The film, based on the life of the Panamanian boxer Roberto Durán, was not shown at the festival as a punishment because … Continue reading "It’s Never Too Late If The Movie Is Good" Continue reading
The North/South Chamber Orchestra under the direction of Max Lifchitz performs new music by composers from Peru and the US NEW YORK, NEW YORK, USA, March 31, 2017 /EINPresswire.com/ -- On Monday evening April 24, the Grammy-nominated North… Continue reading