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October 2017
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14ymedio

14ymedio, Bertha K Guillen, Candelaria, 18 October 2017 — A year ago the smell of guava filled the road where Santiago Hernandez was waiting for the state company Acopio (Collection) to sell the fruit he produced. With the passing of days the flies showed up and the smell turned to rot, but the truck never appeared. Now, … Continue reading "“The State Doesn’t Pay Me, So I Sell On My Own,” Say the Candelaria Guajiros" Continue reading
14ymedio, Zunilda Mata, Havana, 14 October 2017 — “In this street there are five vaults for sale,” says Boris Fernandez as he walks through Colón (Columbus) Cemetery in Havana. “That one has the granite stone but people with money prefer marble,” he explains. His business is “to guarantee rest in the afterlife,” this salesman who lives off … Continue reading "Cemetery Vault For Sale, Deceased Included" Continue reading
14ymedio, Zunilda Mata, Havana, 14 October 2017 — “In this street there are five vaults for sale,” says Boris Fernandez as he walks through Colón (Columbus) Cemetery in Havana. “That one has the granite stone but people with money prefer marble,” he explains. His business is “to guarantee rest in the afterlife,” this salesman who lives off … Continue reading "Cemetery Vault For Sale, Deceased Included" Continue reading
14ymedio, Yoani Sanchez, Havana, 15 October 2017 — It was April 2007 and a time of dark days. The most stagnant part of the Catholic Church intervened in the magazine Vitral (Stained Glass Window), shifting it away from its marked social mission. In the face of the hijacking, the editors jumped ship and months later … Continue reading "Cuba’s ‘Convivencia’ Project Celebrates Its First Decade" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 12 October 2017 — In a note published on its website and distributed through institutional emails, the Union of Writers and Artists of Cuba (UNEAC) warns its members that “some unscrupulous people” are organizing an independent Biennial after the postponement of event originally planned for 2018. The XIII Havana Biennial was postponed to 2019 … Continue reading "Cuban Artists Warned Not To Stage An Independent Biennial" Continue reading
14ymedio, Bertha K. Guillen, Candelaria, 13 October 2017 — The main pharmacy in Candelaria, a city in Cuba’s Artemisa province, looks like an overturned hornet’s nest when new medications arrive. Meanwhile, the area’s chronically ill spend their days in uncertainty due to the shortage of a growing number of drugs, a situation echoed in the … Continue reading "Candelaria Runs Out Of Medicines" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 13 October 2017 — The US embassy in Bogotá will assume the work of issuing immigrant visas to Cubans for as long as the process is suspended at the embassy in Havana as a result of the reduction of personnel that took place because of the acoustic attacks that affected embassy workers. “Due … Continue reading "Cubans Will Now Have to Go to Colombia to Apply for an Immigrant Visa for the US" Continue reading
14ymedio, Jorge Hernandez Fonseca, Miami, 6 October 2017 — The mystery surrounding the so-called “sonic attacks” perpetrated in Cuba against US and Canadian diplomats, set off a major diplomatic crisis between the US government and the Cuban dictatorship of Raúl Castro. Now Cuba suggests that such attacks belong to “science fiction”, although they do not deny … Continue reading "The Sonic Attacks Began With Fidel Castro" Continue reading
14ymedio, Mario Penton, Miami, 12 October 2017 — Russia is again aiding Cuba and, as with the Soviet Union in the 1970s and 1980s, the aid comes in the form of oil. Moscow is trying to compensate for the collapse of Venezuelan shipments, but part of the bill comes from Caracas, says Jorge Piñón, director of … Continue reading "Venezuela Finances Russian Oil Coming To Cuba" Continue reading
14ymedio, Miriam Celaya, Havana, 10 October 2017 — In a simple note consisting only of four paragraphs, the official Cuban press reported yesterday a fact as unexpected as it was unusual: this Tuesday, coinciding with the 149th anniversary of the beginning of the War of Independence, “the political act and military ceremony of the burial … Continue reading "Revolutionary Desecration" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 9 October 2017 – A sober ceremony this Sunday was the official tribute for the 50th anniversary of the death of Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara. Cuban first vice-president Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez deliver the main speech in the city of Santa Clara and called the information about the acoustic attacks suffered by US diplomats in … Continue reading "Cuban VP Diaz-Canel Calls “Acoustic Attacks” Issue “Extraordinary Humbug”" Continue reading
EFE/14ymedio, Havana, 11 October 2017 — The Spanish group Meliá announced Wednesday that it will reopen eleven hotels in Cuba beginning on October 15, two of them in the resort of Varadero and the rest in the keys of the center-north of the island, areas devastated by Hurricane Irma. “Meliá Cuba announces the reopening of … Continue reading "Meliá Reopens Hotels In Varadero Northern Cuban Keys After Hurricane Irma" Continue reading
14ymedio, Miami, 12 October 2017 – On Tuesday, President Donald Trump nominated the Cuban-American Yleem Poblete the a position as assistant secretary of state, according to a statement from the White House. Poblete is an expert in foreign policy and national security who worked for nearly two decades for the United States House of Representatives Committee on … Continue reading "Trump Names Cuban American For Job In His Government" Continue reading
14ymedio, Luz Escobar, Havana, 11 October 2017 — When he was a boy all he needed was a scalpel to shape a piece of wood and he gladly exchanged the tracks of athleticism for art. Luis Manuel Otero Alcántara dreamed of “being famous, having money and improving the world,” but ended up denouncing, through his aesthetic … Continue reading "Luis Manuel Otero: “Fear is One of the Most Effective Tools of This System”" Continue reading
14ymedio, Luz Escobar, Havana, 9 October 2017 – Months ago, surrounded by strict discretion, the remains of Carlos Manuel de Céspedes and Mariana Grajales were exhumed in the Santa Ifigenia cemetery in Santiago de Cuba. The operation was led by the same specialist who, two decades ago, led the search for the remains of Ernesto Che … Continue reading "Cuban Authorities Secretly Disinter Remains of Céspedes and Grajales" Continue reading
14ymedio, Maria Werlau, Miami, 9 October 2017 — ‘Che’ Guevara’s face adorns T-shirts worn by many opponents of capital punishment, but the flesh-and-blood man displayed a deep contempt for the sanctity of human life. Behind the carefully constructed myth of Che, there is a dark and irreconcilable truth. A cursory look at the extensive bibliography on … Continue reading "The Forgotten Victims of ‘Che’ Guevara" Continue reading
14ymedio, Marcelo Hernandez, Havana, 9 October 2017 — She looks suggestively from the door on República Street in the city of Camaguey. “La Dulce Mulata*” says the poster that accompanies her provocative face. With that name, tourists think it’s a brothel, the clueless bet that it is a perfume shop and only those who dare to enter … Continue reading "Bar, Perfume Shop or Brothel?" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 7 October 2017 — Cuban dissident Darsi Ferret, who has lived in the United States since 2012, was found dead Saturday in West Palm Beach, as confirmed to 14ymedio by his colleagues and family. Ferret, 47, a doctor, was at a local television station planning to launch in that Florida city when he died in … Continue reading "Darsi Ferret Dies in Miami" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 3 October 2017 — Carl-Michel Cloutier, a Quebecois married to a Cuban and a frequent traveler to the island, plans never to return after his last experience. The Canadian was arrested, interrogated, had his belongings confiscated and was threatened with prison and never leaving the country, after coming to the island with humanitarian … Continue reading "Quebecois Arrested in Cuba for Bringing Hurricane Aid Without Going Through the Government" Continue reading
14ymedio, Reinaldo Escobar, Havana, 5 October 2017 — Half a century after the death of Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara, the official narrative of what happened on October 9, 1967 in La Higuera, Bolivia has significantly changed. After repeating for decades that Che was murdered in a school in that South American country, the Communist Party’s propaganda media, and in … Continue reading "Crime or Combat?: The Death of Che" Continue reading
14ymedio, Luz Escobar/Mario Penton, Havana/Miami, 5 October 2017 — A few days after the US authorities announced the suspension of the issuance of visas at its embassy in Havana, the State Department has confirmed this Thursday to the Nuevo Herald newspaper that it will not reimburse the money Cubans paid for the visa process. The 160 dollars … Continue reading "Cubans Outraged to Learn they Will Not be Reimbursed for US Visa Interview Fees" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 4 October 2017 — This week the government began the sale of mattresses and household supplies for those affected by Hurricane Irma along Havana’s coastline. At least two points in the city, one for the municipality of Centro Habana and another for Plaza de la Revolución, offer the “module for victims” for a price … Continue reading "Sale of Mattresses Begins for Hurricane Irma Victims in Havana" Continue reading
14ymedio, Zunilda Mata, Havana, 3 October 2017 — Communicating by phone with the US embassy in Havana has become an impossible task. From all parts of the island thousands of people are trying to find out what will happen to the consular interviews they had scheduled before the indefinite suspension of the issuing of visas by … Continue reading "Thousands of Cubans Despair Over Suspension of Visas to USA" Continue reading
14ymedio, Marcelo Hernandez, Havana, 2 October 2017 — After 23 days of closure, Havana’s Malecón has reopened to the passage of pedestrians and vehicles. The “longest bench in the world” was filled this Sunday with hundreds of people eager to recover a routine interrupted by Hurricane Irma. The coastal stretch has seen some private restaurants reopen and … Continue reading "Havana’s Malecon Returns to Life" Continue reading
14ymedio Havana, 2 October 2017 — In recent days Cubans have struggled to take in the news of the reduction of US embassy staff in Havana and the indefinite suspension the processing of visas for Cubans desiring to travel to that country. The diplomatic thaw announced in December 2014 by both governments is currently experiencing a … Continue reading "Waiting For Answers" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 29 September 2017 — State Security cited and threatened three opponents they the would be charged with the crimes of instigation to commit crimes and public disorder after participating two weeks ago in a protest in Carlos Rojas, a town of about 6,000 inhabitants located in the municipality of Jovellanos, in Matanzas province. … Continue reading "State Security Threatens To Prosecute Instigators Of A Protest" Continue reading
14ymedio, Luz Escobar, Havana, 1 October 2017 — To avoid losing his sanity, Daniel Llorente sweeps the floor of the psychiatric hospital in Havana with a broom. Llorente trained in automotive mechanics in East Germany, and five months ago the activist was arrested while waving the American flag in the May Day parade in the … Continue reading "“The Man With the Flag” Marks Five Months Detention" Continue reading
Note: Our apologies for not having a subtitled version of this video EFE / 14ymedio, Havana, 29 September 2017 — On Friday, the United States suspended indefinitely the issuance of visas to Cubans from its embassy in Havana and asked Americans not to travel to Cuba, insisting that it can not guarantee their security after … Continue reading "US Suspends Issuing Of Visas In Havana And Withdraws 60% Of Its Embassy Staff" Continue reading
14ymedio, Zunilda Mata, Havana, 27 September 2017 – Three families are now bathing in Bernardina’s shower. “Everyone brings their own soap but the water is for everyone,” says the 86-year-old woman at her house on Calle Campanario in Havana. After Hurricane Irma the retiree opened her doors to her most affected neighbors, a gesture that is repeated … Continue reading "From Cuban To Cuban, National Solidarity After Hurricane Irma" Continue reading
14ymedio, Yoani Sanchez, Havana, 29 September 2017 — In a country like Cuba, where regional conflicts don’t surpass the resounding insults during a ball game, secessionism sounds like a distant subject. However, the ruling party has not hesitated for more than half a century to support annexation or separatism efforts in other nations based on ideological … Continue reading "Two Referendums, Different Perspectives" Continue reading
14ymedio, Marcelo Hernandez, Havana, 28 September 2017 — Electric motorbikes, known as motorinas, continue to gain space on Cuban streets as an alternative to congested public transportation and the high prices of private taxis. This light vehicle has also become an ally for the home delivery food business, owners of homes for rents and illegal traders. In … Continue reading "Motorbikes to the Rescue in Cuba" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 28 September 2017 — Cuba’s state telecommunications company ETECSA will expand its Nauta Hogar (Nauta Home) service beginning Friday, 29 September, and extend it “gradually through December to all the country’s provinces,” more than six months after the conclusion of the first tests of free home internet access. Amarelys Rodríguez Sánchez, Director of … Continue reading "Home Internet Service to Expand to All of Cuba in December" Continue reading
14ymedio, Caridad Cruz, Cienfuegos/Miami, 28 September 2017 — A strong smell of urine permeates the Russian-style apartment while Margot cooks a couple of pork steaks. “They are boar [the male pig], that’s why the smell,” she explains. Getting food in Cienfuegos, a city that was only affected by the edges of Hurricane Irma, has become an odyssey, … Continue reading "Cienfuegos Left Without Food After Hurricane Irma" Continue reading
14ymedio, Mario Penton, Miami, 22 September 2017 — Carlos Iván González arrived in Florida in 1980, during the Mariel Boatlift exodus, barely 14 years old. Now, at age 50 and after establishing a family in the United States, deportation is hanging over his head. In 2012, he was sentenced by a state judge to five years in … Continue reading "A ‘Marielito’ Will Be Deported After His Release From Prison After 37 Years In The US" Continue reading
14ymedio, Reinaldo Escobar, Havana, 26 September 2017 — Located between two bays, the Holguin municipality of Antilla is among the smallest of Cuba. In District 3, young Roberto Miguel Santana Capdesuñer aspired to be a delegate at the Nominating Candidates Assembly, but a mixture of chance and likely bad intention prevented it. Santana, 27, has been … Continue reading "Chronicle Of A Failed Nomination" Continue reading
14ymedio, Reinaldo Escobar, Havana, 25 September 2017 — When leaving the Argos Theater after the performance of Love Letters to Stalin, a good part of the audience needs to shake their heads. Like someone waking from a nightmare, there will be those who, for long minutes, fear that the monsters from the dream might appear around … Continue reading "The Intellectual and Power, More Than an Epistolary Relationship" Continue reading
14ymedio, Luz Escobar and Zunilda Mata, Havana/Varadero, 21 September 2017 — “This is what’s left of the gardens of the Blue Lagoon,” says an employee while looking at a cellphone photo of fallen palm trees and tangled vegetation. The bus in which he is traveling is responsible for distributing staff to the hotels in Varadero, Cuba’s … Continue reading "Irma Reconfigures Cuba’s Tourist Map" Continue reading
14ymedio, Generation Y, Yoani Sanchez, Havana, 25 September 2017 — Most active politicians like to have their photos taken while greeting children, talking to factory workers, or visiting a disaster area. These images, seen on countless occasions, do not translate into better government performance, or even real concern, but at least they are consistent with a … Continue reading "Absence Means Forgetting" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 25 September 2019 – The Promotion Division of Cuba’s National Council of the Arts and the Wifredo Lam Center for Contemporary Art announced that the 13th Havana Biennial, scheduled to be held next year, will be postponed until 2019. A press release on the Council’s website it explains that due “the extremely serious … Continue reading "Havana Biennial Postponed to 2019 Because of “Serious Damages” from Hurricane Irma" Continue reading
14ymedio, Luz Escobar, Havana, 23 September 2017 – Hope is fading these days in Havana’s San Lázaro Street due to the closing of the Malecón, after the damages left by Hurricane Irma. The lives of the residents along the coastline are stalled, waiting for humanitarian aid that has never arrived. The San Leopoldo neighborhood and the … Continue reading "Hurricane Victims Along Havana’s Coastline Wait for Help That Never Comes" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 20 September 2017 — The independent candidate Yusniel Pupo Carralero denounced on Wednesday that he had been detained by State Security to prevent him from participating in the People’s Power Nominating Assembly for his district in the municipality of San Juan y Martinez in Pinar del Río. Once communications were restored in his town … Continue reading "" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 21 September 2017 — Economist Karina Gálvez was sentenced Thursday by the Municipal Court of the city of Pinar del Rio to three years of deprivation of liberty and the confiscation of her home for the crime of tax evasion, a member of the Center for Coexistence Studies CEC) confirmed 14ymedio. A court decision … Continue reading "Cuban Economist Karina Gálvez Sentenced To Three Years In Prison" Continue reading
14ymedio, Carlos Alberto Montaner, Miami, 17 September 2017 — In the middle of the hurricane I received a mysterious photo of Fidel Castro. At the top it said: “Fidel resurrected.” Below the portrait the mystery was clarified: “His name is Irma.” The Commander was reincarnated as a ferocious hurricane. The joke has a serious basis Juan Manuel Cao, … Continue reading "A Hurricane Called Communism" Continue reading
14ymedio, Marcelo Hernandez, Havana, 19 September 2017 – Planning what to bring and filling their suitcases with their purchases abroad is the obsession of any Cuban who returns to the island. After Hurricane Irma, the victims and self-employed are waiting for the General Customs of the Republic (AGR) to relax customs fees so they can … Continue reading "Cubans Hope For Customs Moratorium After Irma" Continue reading
14ymedio, Luz Escobar and Zunilda Mata, Havana, 18 September 2017 — Black smoke from charcoal rises from an improvised fire in Dinora’s yard, which is close to the area most affected by Hurricane Irma in Caibarién, in the province of Villa Clara. In addition to half her house being on the ground, her new problem now … Continue reading "Charcoal, the Expensive and Only Cooking Fuel After Irma" Continue reading