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The Theft of Cuban Baseball Talent PDF Print E-mail

By Manuel E. Yepe

A CubaNews translation. Edited by Walter Lippmann.

The attempt to attribute a political motive to the theft of talent from Cuban sports by describing this international crime as an anti-communist exodus adds cynicism and cruelty to a criminal abuse poor countries have faced from time immemorial.

Why do they claim that Cuban players escape Communism to go play in the Major Leagues in the United States, when the new Cuban sports and immigration policies allow these athletes to play as professionals in any country in the world?

The Cubainformación website, based in Spain and directed by Basque journalist José Manzaneda, recently explained how the singular theft of Cuban baseball talent works.

The ascent to the majors for applicants in the United States is basically through college teams. It starts with the system known as "drafting" which is a register where applicants enroll. This register regulates the contract and wage relationships governing the links of the players to the teams and unions. Four years later, the players can leave the "draft". Some (if they stand out with exceptional skills in the sport) become “free agents” who can negotiate big contracts by themselves.

As a rule, Latin American players (excluding Cubans), are formed in schools that US teams have created have all over Latin America. Being just kids, they sign contracts with the clubs which invest in their training and are tied to the terms of the economic conditions that will govern their future in U.S. professional baseball.

The U.S. Treasury Department prohibits Cuban baseball players from signing with an American club if they maintain residence on the island and/or have links with the Instituto Cubano de Deportes Educación Física y Recreación (INDER) [Cuban Sports Institute].

The Cuban Adjustment Act, enacted by the United States in 1966 to promote the theft of talent in all fields and to feed the propaganda campaign against Cuba, states that any Cuban who reaches U.S. territory by any means, even if as a result human trafficking, automatically gets a work permit and residence. But this law alone is not enough for the theft of great Cuban baseball stars in the terms required by major traffickers.

The mechanism in place for baseball big business to get a Cuban baseball star to play in the Major Leagues usually begins with a trip of the player to another country. This country cannot be the United States or Canada, because in any of these two countries he would have the obligation to integrate into the "drafting" system, which would reduce his economic prospects.

Residing in Haiti, the Dominican Republic or Mexico, as a supposed "free agent," a representative of the baseball player negotiates on his behalf with the "scout" of the interested team. The main corporate media complement this cynical game by publishing news of alleged "escapes" or "getaways" as if the freedom of contract and player movement were restricted by Cuba and not by the United States.

The rules currently in place in Cuba provide that when a foreign team or baseball sports organization is interested in acquiring the services of a Cuban baseball player, it should settle the terms through the Cuban Baseball Federation. This has been done by organizations from other countries which already have Cuban athletes and technicians on their payrolls.

However none of the thirty U.S. Major League baseball teams has used this route; and the very small number of Cuban baseball players in their ranks had to place themselves in the hands of the internationally illegal human traffickers with its cohort of "coyotes" and gangsters.

Cuban baseball, as Cuban sports in general, is based on dignity, honesty and decency. It is is undoubtedly at a disadvantage compared to the squalor which characterizes commercial relations applied to sports. Cuba has tried to circumvent these disadvantages, though not always successfully.

Some of the prohibitions with which Cuba has tried to protect the purity of its sports have proved unsustainable in a globalized world. There, with rules and procedures imposed by large capitalist consortia, and so the island has been forced to replace them with others more consistent with international trends, provided these changes do not violate the principles which characterize the political and social system the Cuban people are building.

Nothing should prevent Cuba and the United States to expand their collaboration in the field of baseball, a big favorite sport among the public in both countries. And there are many things that can be settled without wars, drones, or bombs.


Discover The Five PDF Print E-mail

16 Years is Too Long

Cuba Confers Friendship Medal on Prominent Canadian Intellectual Keith Ellis PDF Print E-mail

Keith EllisProfessor Keith EllisThe CNC executive wishes to congratulate Keith Ellis on the award of the prestigious Medal of Friendship by the Council of State of the Republic of Cuba.

This award is a recognition of Professor Ellis's unflagging and indefatigable dedication to building bridges of solidarity and friendship between the Canadian and Cuban peoples.

Keith Ellis, a professor emeritus at the University of Toronto, had made - and continues to make - an invaluable contribution to Latin American culture and life. His brilliant translation into English of the work of key Cuban figures - such as José Martí - has made these works accessible to those who would otherwise remain unaware of the beauty and insights of this literary treasure.

It must be emphasized that these are not solely literary exercises by Professor Ellis, but part and parcel of his commitment to the create a better world based on equality and justice for all.

News on Cuba - June 12, 2014 PDF Print E-mail

Group of 77 will Condemn US Hostile Policy against Cuba
HAVANA, Cuba, Jun 12 (acn) The final declaration to be adopted by the upcoming Summit of the Group of 77 plus China will condemn US’s unilateral and offensive actions against Cuba, including the most recent and subversive Twitter program Zunzuneo.
According to the island’s permanent mission at the United Nations, the draft document strongly rejects the sanctions imposed by North countries against nations in the South, based on issues like terrorism, traffic in persons and drug traffic.
The forum, made up of 133 nations, is also expected to reject the use of information technologies in violation of international law and in this regards the Group of 77 plus China has noted that the US-sponsored program known as Zunzuneo against Cuba exposes its illegal use of such modern technologies.
The summit will also back Havana against Washington’s blacklisting of Cuba as a state sponsoring terrorism, which is an excuse to justify the over-50-year economic blockade against the Cuban people.
The Group of 77 agenda also includes initiatives about climate change, migration, agriculture, health and education, the millennium goals and the post 2005 working agenda for sustainable development.

Ecuador says No More Summits of the Americas without Cuba
HAVANA, Cuba, Jun 12 (acn) Ecuadorian foreign minister Ricardo Patiño said in Quito that without Cuba’s full participation there will be no Summit of the Americas in Panama next year.
In a press conference on Wednesday, the foreign minister said that there is regional consensus on the Cuba issue as it was evidenced at the recent meeting of the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR), held in Galapagos Islands and at the Forum of the Organization of American States (OAS), in Paraguay.
Ecuadorian president Rafael Correa recently reiterated that his country will not go to the Panama Summit of the Americas if Cuba is not there.
It is unacceptable holding a Summit of the Americas without Cuba, as it is also unacceptable the existence of the Organization of American States without Cuba, and Latin America cannot tolerate this situation, said Correa.
Ecuador did not attend the 2013 Summit of the Americas in protest for Cuba’s absence.

Cuba is Fully Committed against all Forms of Terrorism
HAVANA, Cuba, Jun 12 (acn) Cuba ratified at the UN General Assembly its commitment to fight all acts and forms of terrorism.
We reiterate our deepest rejection and condemnation of those acts, disregarding any the motivations, places, targets and actors, said Cuban diplomat Tanieris Dieguez at a forum on terrorism and its causes.
The diplomat also noted that all arbitrary and unilateral measures, acts of aggression, covert actions, unilateral sanctions and the blacklisting of countries with political aims are unjustifiable.
Dieguez denounced the impunity and double-standard policies on the issue, which are tools used by some superpowers to pretend that they are facing terrorism only to back their own interests.
Cuba also expressed its firm and unquenchable willingness to collaborate with multilateral efforts to put an end to all terrorist acts, methods and practices.

Haiti Opens Third Hospital with Cuban and Haiti Collaboration
HAVANA, Cuba, Jun 12 (acn) Haiti opened on June 11 its third community hospital with the support of Cuba and Brazil, after the earthquake that hit the nation in January 2010.
The medical facility was inaugurated by President Michel Martelly at the Carrefour neighborhood, west of the capital Port au Prince and it will benefit a population of more than 60 thousand, according to PL news agency.
Martelly stressed the importance of Cuban cooperation in the health sector and in other areas, such as education, fishing, construction and agriculture.
Meanwhile, Cuban ambassador to Haiti, Ricardo Garcia, said that the facility, in which Cuban medical specialists will also work, will contribute to the strengthening and reconstruction of the Haitian health system in order to improve the people’s quality of life.
Last Month, Haitian authorities opened a community hospital in the locality of Bon Repos with capacity for 52 beds and primary services in the specialties of surgery, general medicine, orthopedics, pediatrics, gynecology among others.

Cuba Protects its Cohiba Cigar Brand from Forgery
HAVANA, Cuba, Jun (acn) In an effort to protect reiterated forgery of the Cuban cigar brand known as Cohiba Behike, a new hologram will be incorporated to the ring of each cigar.
The new hologram will allow identifying the original brand around the world and will also provide additional information on the distributor, the bill number and other details.
Since their presentation in 2010, the Cohiba Behike cigar rings have the head of an Indian and a security hologram on each of them. Cohiba, the most representative brand of Cuban Habano cigars, was established in 1966.
The name Cohiba refers to the bunches of tobacco leaves that Cuban aborigines used to smoke on the island.
Cohiba Behike cigars are produced in limited amounts and it is characterized by its blend with exceptional scent and taste.
Despite the world economic crisis and anti-tobacco campaigns, Cuba earned over 400 million dollars in terms of cigar exports in 2013. Major markets for the Cuban products are Spain, France, China, Germany, Switzerland, Lebanon, and the Arab Emirates.

Cuba Reports Increase in Tourist Arrivals
HAVANA, Cuba, Jun (acn) Cuba reported 1 million 282 thousand 734 foreign visitors in the first quarter of 2014, almost a third of the expected figure for this year.
Tourist arrivals have grown by 5 percent thus far, which is favorable for the sector’s expectations to reach 3 million visits in 2014, according to the National Statistics Office (ONE).
Canada continues to be the major source of tourists to the island, followed by Germany, France, Italy, and the U.K.
Cuban tourism officials say although the summer season has traditionally been less favorable, expectations are good given the opening of new flights and the promotion of special offers.
Cuba received two million 852 thousand 572 tourists in 2013, which translated into more than 1.8 billion dollars. However the figure represented only 0.5 percent growth for the sector.
At present Cuba offers 58 thousand 434 hotel rooms, in four and five-star-facilities throughout the island.

Sherritt International Extends Oil Contract with Cuba
HAVANA, Cuba, Jun (acn) The Canadian Sherritt International Corporation announced in Ottawa the extension of its oil and gas shared production contract (PSC) with Cuba for 10 years, an extension of the agreements that expired in 2018.

According to a note confirmed by Juan Torres Naranjo, General Director of Cupet, the alliance of the Canadian enterprise with Cuba’s Cubapetroleo (Cupet) will continue until March, 2028, the Prensa Latina news agency reported.  He said that added to this would be other exploratory shared production contracts, pending of approval by the appropriate authorities. 

The modified agreement includes the extension of the Puerto Escondido-Yumuri PSC, which will allow for a greater development of drillings in these fields, located in the north coast of the western part of the island, he specified.

During the new 10-year period, Sherritt commits itself to drill a minimum of seven additional wells in the first two years starting from the day the agreement comes into force, the same source informed.

The extension applies to all new wells drilled after the modification of the PSC, explains the press release.

The president of Sherritt International, David Pathe, expressed his satisfaction while announcing this extension of the alliance with Cuba as an important landmark in the continuity of long-term oil production on the island.

Cuba Assembles Biotechnology Plants in Other Nations
HAVANA, Cuba, Jun (acn) Cuba’s Biopharmaceutical Laboratory Business Group (LABIOFAM) is working on the design, construction, assembly and launch of biotechnology plants in countries like Ethiopia and Tanzania, after doing so in Venezuela, China, Vietnam and Argentina, among other countries.

These efforts will be shown during the LABIOFAM 2014 International Congress, scheduled for September 22-25 at Havana’s Convention Center, announced on Thursday during a press conference Jose Antonio Fraga, director of the entity.

Attending the meeting will be entrepreneurs and health and agriculture ministers of several countries, representatives of international organizations and delegates of Spain, China, Russia, Rumania, Peru, Mexico, the United States, Bolivia and Chile, among other nations.

LABIOFAM develops a wide gamut of bio-pesticides, bio-stimulants and bio-fertilizer products for human, plant and animal use, with the purpose of preventing the harmful damage caused by chemicals. 

Jardines del Rey Tourist Destination Starts 2014 Summer Season

CIEGO DE AVILA, Cuba, Jun (acn) With the aim of improving quality of services in all facilities and achieving a personalized service, Jardines del Rey tourist destination starts 2014 summer season.

Iyolexis Correa, delegate of Tourism Minister in Ciego de Avila, said this enclave of 5900 rooms reached during winter period the best results ever with substantial growth in all emitting markets.

She noted that Coco and Guillermo Cays are prepared to assume the new stage with infrastructure improvements, rehabilitation of inner roads and repair of several bridges on the viaduct linking the islands to mainland.

Signposting and information through fences is also superior, in addition to non-hotel products with the opening of La Gaviota Mall, Rocarena multifunctional establishment and Buena Vista Club, in Morón town.

Correa explained that between July and September a weekly flight of 280 passengers will arrive at Jardines del Rey airport from Lisbon, which strengthens the arrival of European tourists; plus the Italian market possibilities are explored from an exclusive product design.

Jardines del Rey has in Canada, Argentina and the United Kingdom its main foreign emitting markets, while the national market shows an upward growth that places it second regarding the number of tourists.


News on Cuba - Zunzuneo Affair PDF Print E-mail

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Condemns Anti-Cuban Program ZunZuneo

Paris, Apr 23 (Prensa Latina) Foreign Minister of Venezuela, Elías Jaua, condemned today in France the anti-Cuban program ZunZuneo, created by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), with the purpose of promoting subversion and destabilization in Cuba.

"We reject this new aggression of the U.S government towards the Cuban people and the government. Venezuela's position is firm and without double standards", stated Jaua in response to a question by Prensa Latina in a press conference at Unesco.

The minister recalled his country defends the non-intervention and non-interference principles in the internal affairs of any nation.

The concealed program of the USAID, revealed by the Associated Press (AP), consisted in the creation of a Twitter in Cuba to provoke situations of destabilization and changes in the political system. '"We consider that Cuba has developed its own political system, with the majority support of his people, which must be respected and that is the way the region recognizes it ', stated Jaua.

Costa Rican Committee Demands U.S. Explanation for Subversive Acts

San Jose, Apr 23 (Prensa Latina) Costa Rica's Solidarity with Cuba Committee urged Laura Chinchilla's administration to demand an explanation from the United States for having used the country as an operational base for the Cuban Twitter ZunZuneo project to subvert the island.

"Costa Rica should not allow the government of the United States to use the country as an operational base to attack independent, sovereign and friendly countries like Cuba", said a statement released by the organization.

Instead of trying to destabilize the Cuban people and authorities, the United States should lift the 50-year-old unjust economic, commercial and financial blockade, the document highlights.

The USAID is not a U.S. Agency for Development; it is a destabilizing agency for countries not subservient to U.S. policy, it adds.

The note recalled that the U.S. government, through the USAID, hired the company Creative Associates International, whose task was to develop a communication network from Costa Rica.

Zunzuneo Violates Law Principles, Swiss Academician Says

Geneva, Apr 24 (Prensa Latina) U.S. program Zunzuneo, created to promote subversion in Cuba, is a violation of the basic principles of law and international relations, academician Alfred de Zayas said here today.

According to a report recently published by the Associated Press (AP) news agency, this Twitter account running from 2010 a 2012 was aimed at influencing the island's youth and inciting internal destabilization.

Particularly dangerous is the fact that that secret social network reached more than 40,000 subscribers, without revealing them that contractors collected their private information with political purposes, De Zayas, an International Law professor Geneva, Apr 24 (Prensa Latina) U.S. program Zunzuneo, created to promote subversion in Cuba, is a violation of the basic principles of law and international relations, academician Alfred de Zayas said here today.

According to a report recently published by the Associated Press (AP) news agency, this Twitter account running from 2010 a 2012 was aimed at influencing the island's youth and inciting internal destabilization.

Particularly dangerous is the fact that that secret social network reached more than 40,000 subscribers, without revealing them that contractors collected their private information with political purposes, De Zayas, an International Law professor at the Geneva School of Diplomacy, said.

Interviewed by Prensa Latina, the academician stated that powerful states grant the prerogative of ignoring basic principles when they suit.

"That attitude is a routine that we can call a culture of interference in the internal affairs of other States, and usurpation of collective and individual rights of peoples and citizens," he said.

The professor recalled articles 1 and 2 of the U.N. Charter that affirms sovereign equality of all members and the International Pact proclaiming the right to self-determination and private life.

He also mentioned many resolutions by the General Assembly, among them that stipulating the State's obligation of not interfering in the affairs of any other country, which is an essential condition to ensure peaceful coexistence among nations.

According with AP revelations, the Zunzuneo program, using new technologies with destabilizing purposes, was created by the United States Agency for International Development.

Questioned about the use of funds by American taxpayers for those purposes, the professor said that that country's citizens have the right to know how their taxes are spent.

"We hope that representatives and senators of the U.S. Congress achieve to clarify several Zunzuneo aspects, even who authorized the program. Anyone has to be accountable. We need more transparency and responsibility," the professor said at the Geneva School of Diplomacy.

Interviewed by Prensa Latina, the academician stated that powerful states grant the prerogative of ignoring basic principles when they suit.

"That attitude is a routine that we can call a culture of interference in the internal affairs of other States, an usurpation of collective and individual rights of peoples and citizens," he said.

The professor recalled articles 1 and 2 of the U.N. Charter that affirms sovereign equality of all members and the International Pact proclaiming the right to self-determination and private life.

He also mentioned many resolutions by the General Assembly, among them that stipulating the State's obligation of not interfering in the affairs of any other country, which is an essential condition to ensure peaceful coexistence among nations.

According with AP revelations, the Zunzuneo program, using new technologies with destabilizing purposes, was created by the United States Agency for International Development.

Questioned about the use of funds by American taxpayers for those purposes, the professor said that that country's citizens has the right to know how their taxes are spent.

"We hope that representatives and senators of the U.S. Congress achieve to clarify several Zunzuneo aspects, even who authorized the program. Anyone has to be accountable. We need more transparency and responsibility," the professor said.

Bolivian Senator Condemns US Hostility Against Cuba

La Paz, Apr 23 (Prensa Latina) The vice president of the Chamber of Deputies of Bolivia, Gabriela Montaño, condemned the current hostile U.S. policy against Cuba and described what occurred with Zunzuneo, a project aimed at strengthening civil disobedience in the island, as very dangerous.

In exclusive statements to Prensa Latina, the also president of the International Policy Committee of the Senate, recalled that Zunzuneo "is one of the actions carried out by the U.S. empire to interfere in our countries, and one of the hundreds of actions against the Cuban people."

"There have been hundreds of actions against the island and the network Zunzuneo seems very dangerous to us, firstly because it is something absolutely recognized by the U.S. government, which admitted financing by American taxpayers in those actions," she said.

Montaño also criticized that the U.S. government tries to brainwash younger generations.

"In case of Cuba, there are whole generations who have not experienced lack of education, health, or basic services, who have not lived to be anyone's backyard, and have always lived with dignity, sovereignty, and therefore to try to brainwash such young people is disgusting."

She praised the stance by Bolivian President Evo Morales to expel from the country the U.S.Agency for International Development (USAID), which promoted Zunzuneo in Cuba.

Finally, she stated that "what the United States will never understand is that we do not need it to build and strengthen our democracy. And the farther away it remains, the better".

Zunzuneo was a social network similar to Twitter, created secretly by the USAID, and mounted on the Cuban cell telephone network in an attempt to influence the island's youth.


News on Cuba - April 24, 2014 PDF Print E-mail

Fidel Castro's Life Work Praised in Argentina

Buenos Aires, Apr 23 (Prensa Latina) The event dedicated to analyzing and highlighting the work and thought of the historic leader of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro, continues today in this capital with a roundtable discussion "Fidel and the emancipation of Our America.

"The forum will be held at the Cultural Center of Cooperation (CCC) in Buenos Aires, featuring speeches by researcher and political scientist Atilio Boron, historian Francisco Martinez, and Cuban ambassador Jorge Lamadrid.

This roundtable discussion is part of the "Fidel's Week" program in Argentina, which included the opening of a photography exhibition "Fidel: 83 Reasons," and in which the launch of the book "Fidel, a history, five opinions," containing pictures from the five photographers included in that exhibition, is expected.

Panelists at the CCC will discuss the thought of the Cuban revolutionary leader and his decisive contributions to the awakenings of the revolutionary conscience of "Our America."

The awareness of the unfinished nature of the independence struggles in early 19th century and, therefore, the need to strive for what Fidel Castro called "our second and final independence," will be also analyzed.

The photography exhibition "Fidel: 83 Reasons," which national legislator Juan Carlos Junio, CCC director said "is much more than an exhibit; it is a tribute to a man who made history, which we are still living" opened yesterday night before a large audience gathered at the prestigious center.

"For those of us at the Cultural Center of Cooperation (CCC), Fidel Castro is a central figure in the political struggles of our America and also of our own country, so we should have paid tribute," the legislator told Prensa Latina.

The exhibition also compiling snapshots taken by Osvaldo Salas, Liborio Noval, Roberto Salas, and Pablo Caballero, presented for the first time in Mexico in 2009.

New Foreign Investment Law Favors Cuba’s Development

HAVANA, Cuba, April 24 (acn) The new Foreign Investment Law is necessary because it will be implemented in a peculiar stage of development of the country and amidst the update of Cuban economy, said Foreign Trade and Investment Minister Rodrigo Malmierca.

In a prime-time television show, Malmierca explained the main aspects of the new law, recently approved by the Cuban Parliament. He said that the implementation of the new legislation does not mean the abandonment of socialism, but the strengthening of foreign investment as an additional element for the development of the country.

Cuban economy needs to increase its levels over 20 percent, which would favor the growth of the Gross Domestic Product by five percent in a sustained manner. The law will also favor the introduction of capital and so contribute to count on two billion dollars annually, as a complement to the efforts being made by the country, he said.

However, the minister noted that the implementation of the law cannot be looked at separately from the complex situation of Cuba, a country under the US blockade, with debts and high financial risks, which causes investors to operate with some limits and with this in mind the law is crystal clear, attractive and transparent, Malmierca stressed.

The law prioritizes eleven sectors including agriculture, the food industry, the sugar sector, the metal and light industries, the pharmaceutical and biotechnology fields, energy, mines, wholesale market, tourism, construction and transportation.

FAO Says Cuba Has Great Potential for Sustainable Agriculture

HAVANA, Cuba, April 24 (acn) Theodor Friedrich, representative of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization in Cuba said that the island has great potential to develop sustainable agriculture.

Addressing participants at the 11th International Forum on CubaSolar 2014, which promotes renewable energy initiatives, underway in Varadero Tourist resort, in western Matanzas province, the expert said that the Cuban scientific community has the political willingness and the necessary knowledge to foster what is known as the paradigm of conservationist agriculture, though he stressed the need to introduce modifications that contribute to the degradation of the soil.

In his lecture, the FAO representative said that the world is facing the challenge of food security due to high prices, lack of availability of foodstuffs among other obstacles.

In 2050, the world will have to feed nine billion people, therefore it is crucial to change the models of food production and distribution, because 30 percent of the food produced is being wasted, the expert said.

The forum is also addressing renewable energy sources, water supply, among other issues related to the use of the environment. Experts from 11 nations from Europe and the Americas are attending the conference.

Vice-president of European Parliament Receives Cuban Medal

HAVANA, Cuba, Apr 23 (acn) Miguel Angel Martinez, Vice-president of the European Parliament, received on Wednesday in this capital the Friendship Medal given by the Cuban Council of State to international personalities with a solidarity stance towards the country in an active and continuous way.

Ana Maria Mari Machado, Vice-president of the National Assembly of the People’s Power (Parliament), presented Martinez with the medal in a ceremony held in the Jose Marti Memorial in the presence of numerous guests, among them relatives of the Cuban antiterrorists condemned to long sentences in the United States.

The acknowledgement is given by the Council of State at the request of the Cuban Institute for Friendship with the Peoples (ICAP).

ICAP president Kenia Serrano highlighted the outstanding work of Martinez in favor of the Cuban fighters arrested in the United States and against Washington’s economic, financial and commercial blockade against the Caribbean nation.

Cuba: International Seminar on the Caribbean Begins in Havana

Havana, Apr 23 (Prensa Latina) The International Seminar "Marcadores del Tiempo en las Antillas" (Time Markers in the Antilles) opens today at Casa de las Americas in Havana to discuss the special features of insular region of the Caribbean.

The panels made up by specialists from different disciplines will discuss the events that constituted markers in the evolution of societies in the Caribbean as well as the formation of identities during the 19th and 20th centuries.

Cuban researcher Jesus Guanche will give today the lecture "Memoria del legado africano en el Caribe insular" (Memory of African legacy in insular Caribbean).

Specialists will analyze tomorrow the economic aspects related to agriculture, the features of lands in the Caribbean and the development of railroad, among other subjects.

The works of artists and writers from the Caribbean, like Cubans Wifredo Lam and Alejo Carpentier, will also be analyzed.

Cuban Group La Colmenita To Perform in Hanoi

Hanoi, Apr 23 (Prensa Latina) Cuban group La Colmenita brought today to Hanoi the joy of its music, along with the energy received from the public who gave it a warm welcomed during the week of performances at the prestigious Festival of Hue in Central Viet Nam.

In a reduced format the group of the Cuban Theatrical Company delighted its public with a program of emblematic songs of the national repertoire that spanned different genres. It included Guantanamera, which unleashed claps of accompaniment of the public.

The nine young performers, who were once members of La Colmenita for children, pleasantly surprised the Vietnamese people when its two singers performed in their own language the popular piece "You are still marching with us, Uncle Ho", inspired by the liberation of Saigon in 1975 and the reunification of the motherland.

When presenting the theatrical company, the Cuban Ambassador to Viet Nam, Herminio López, emphasized the objective of fully develop the artistic capabilities of its members declared children ambassadors of good will of the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF).

During the stay in Hue they offered seven functions in the old Imperial City An Cuu, in open squares, in mobile floats on streets and to hundreds of patients and paramedical personnel of the Central Hospital of the city to continue transmitting especially the joy they carry.

Cuba will Host 7th Campaign against Homophobia

HAVANA, Cuba, April 24 (acn) The 7th Cuban Campaign against homophobia will include a regional conference with the participation of the International Association of Gays, Lesbian, Bisexuals, Trans and Intersexual people from Latin America and the Caribbean. This event takes place in Cuba for the first time.

The forum, which will be held May 5-25, acknowledges the advancements of the island in the promotion of respect for sexual orientation and gender identity.

The International Association aims at the equality of rights for lesbians, gays, bisexual, Trans and intersexual person, which was founded in 1978.

The Cuban campaign against homophobia, which is organized by the Cuban Sexual Education Center, with the Health Ministry, will include educative, recreational, and cultural and sports actions with a social perspective.

Cuban Poet Wins Pablo Neruda Ibero-American Poetry Award

Santiago de Chile, Apr 23 (Prensa Latina) Cuban Reina María Rodríguez won today the Pablo Neruda Ibero-American Poetry Award, one of the most important literary awards in the genre.

The Chilean Minister of Culture, Claudia Barattini, made public the announcement at the La Chascona House Museum, Neruda's residence, where an international jury deliberated.

In addition to Barattini, the jury was integrated by Argentinean Graciela Aráoz, Peruvian Julio Ortega, Chilean Pablo Brodsky and Malú Urriola, and last year's winner, José Kózer.

The 61-year-old writer won the National Prize of Literature in Cuba last year, for her poetic work and as narrator, with a score of twenty titles translated into several languages.

Rodriguez also has the Order of Arts and Letters of France, the medal Alejo Carpentier, the Critics National Award and two Casa de las Américas Awards (1984 and 1998).

Chile presents Pablo Neruda award since 2004, and is already one of the most prestigious in Latin America, in addition to the better paid in the field of Latin American poetry.


News on Cuba - April 23, 2014 PDF Print E-mail

Fidel Castro Sends Wreath to Gabo in Mexican Homage

Mexico, Apr 22 (Prensa Latina) The historic leader of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro, sent a wreath to the tribute in Mexico to Colombian writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez, to whom he had a strong and lasting friendship.

A white and yellow offering arrived in the Mexico City Palace of Fine Arts, with a dedication: To a Dear Friend.

On Monday, during a tribute dedicated to the 1982 Nobel Literature Prizewinner, a flower arrangement was received by the island's President Raul Castro, who recalled with that gesture that the author of One Hundreds Years of Solitude was a great friend of Cuba.

International media have stressed these days the author's strong friendship with the Caribbean nation, which goes back to the 60s of the last century, when he began to work as a journalist with the then newly created Prensa Latina agency.

As Fidel Castro has expressed, the relationship with the author of "Love in the Times of Cholera" was cultivated for many years, including the hundreds of pleasant conversations they had.

With those tributes, the Caribbean country joined to thousands of people who gathered in the Mexican cultural centre to pay the last respects to Garcia Marquez, who died in this capital on April 17 at the age of 87.

His remains were exposed in the facility's lobby for those who wished to pay him tribute, at a ceremony led by Mexico's President Enrique Peña Nieto, and Colombia's Juan Manuel Santos.

Cuba to Chair World Health Assembly for the First Time

HAVANA, Cuba, Apr 23 (acn) Cuba will chair, for the first time, the World Health Assembly, the 67th edition of which will be held on May 19-24 in Geneva, announced an official of the Cuban Public Health Ministry (MINSAP).

In a conversation with ACN, Doctor Antonio Gonzalez, head of the department of international organizations of the MINSAP, explained that Cuba was selected, to a large extent, due to the results and the great repercussion of health actions in the country and in other parts of the world.

Cuba has practically met all the Development Goals of the Millennium, since mortality rate in 2013 was 4.2 per every 1,000 live births, the lowest in the Americas, including those of Canada and the United States, as well as the mother mortality rate, 21 per every 100,000, which is among the lowest in Latin America, he underlined.

In addition, the AIDS epidemics, Tuberculosis (TB) and Malaria have been controlled, specified the expert, and highlighted that the first disease is not a health problem, as it happens in other nations, and that antiretroviral medicines are guaranteed to persons needing them.

With the vaccination campaigns carried out on the island we have eliminated other transmissible diseases, such as poliomyelitis, diphtheria, whooping cough, neonatal tetanus and rubella, by way of a vaccination scheme that protect children against 13 diseases, he stated.

Norwegian Activists Express Support for Cuban Sovereignty

HAVANA, Cuba, Apr 23 (acn) Supporting Cuba, its Revolution, and the right of the people to sovereignty will continue being the main task of the Norway-Cuba Friendship Association, Cubaforeningen, ratified on Tuesday in this capital Tejer Enger, president of that movement.

Terje, who is on a visit to Cuba on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the creation of the group, underlined in a press conference that one of its most important missions is the struggle for the release of the five Cuban antiterrorists unfairly condemned in the United States, two of which are already back on the island, after serving their sentences.

He argued that during the 3rd campaign “Five Days for the Five Cubans,” to take place in Washington on June 4-11, the members of the Association will publish information on the case, to contribute to make it better known.

Another of the purposes of the Friendship Association is to fight misunderstandings and distortions spread in Norway about Cuba, said Norwegian trade union leader Benqt Gustav Ericsson, who praised the fact that the island has been able to maintain, for over 50 years, its foreign relations without foreign interference.

Cuban and European Union Experts Share Economic and Commercial Experience

HAVANA, Cuba, Apr 23 (acn) European Union and Cuban experts are exchanging their experiences on economic and commercial issues during a forum in Havana as part of bilateral collaboration actions opened in 2008.

The exchange program includes subjects, such as statistics, taxation management, local development, European Union commercial standards, international economic cooperation, food security and the environment, according to PL news agency.

European Union ambassador to Havana Herman Portocarrero said that the forum will support the ongoing update of Cuban economy. This is a learning process that helps the upcoming political dialog between Cuba and the European Union, he said.

Meanwhile, the director of commercial policy with Europe at the Foreign Trade and Investment Ministry, Raul Becerra, stressed collaboration with the European Union in food security, the environment, renewable energy, culture and the prevention of natural disasters.

Cuba Says US Obstacles on UN mission is Unacceptable

HAVANA, Cuba, Apr 23 (acn) Cuba demanded respect for international law in the face of hurdles that the United States could pose against the work of the United Nations by denying a visa to the new Iranian ambassador appointed to Washington.

Hindering the normal performance of diplomatic missions accredited at the United Nations is unacceptable, said legal councilor at the Cuban mission at the United Nations Tanieris Diegues during a meeting of a UN Committee addressing a complaint issued by Tehran following the denial by Washington of a visa for Hamid Aboutalebi.

The event affects the participation of the Iranian delegation and its performance at the United Nations, said the Cuban diplomat, who noted that Cuba, Belarus, Ecuador, the Democratic Republic of Korea and Russia expressed concern about the US decision.

Only the US representative Rosemary DiCarlo backed the measure taken by the White House alleging that Aboutalebi participated in the storming of the US embassy in Tehran in 1979.

The Iranian Charge d Affaires Gholamhossein Dehghani urged Washington to meet its obligations as host country of the United Nations and said that the US stance undermines the work of the world organization and multilateralism.

Kazakh FM Highlights Strength of Relations with Cuba

HAVANA, Cuba, Apr 22 (acn) The Kazakh Minister of Foreign Affairs, Erlan Idrissov, highlighted on Tuesday the good state of diplomatic and friendly bonds between his country and Cuba, on the occasion of Reforestation Day in Kazakhstan.

Idrissov and the officials of the Cuban diplomatic legation in Astana planted a young pine tree called the tree of Cuba, informed the Prensa Latina news agency.

It will grow high and strong like the friendship uniting our states and peoples, said the Kazakh Foreign Minister at the end of the day of voluntary work.

The island’s ambassador to Kazakhstan, Carlos Valdes, expressed his appreciation for the opportunity to participate together with the Kazakh people in this day of peace and friendship, and underlined the importance of maintaining Astana, the country’s capital, as a prosperous, clean and green city.

Cienfuegos the Cuban City That Celebrates 195 Years

Cienfuegos, Apr 22 (Prensa Latina) The south-central city of Cienfuegos celebrated today the 195 anniversary of its foundation in the ninth year of being declared World Heritage Site, category granted by UNESCO.

According to the tradition, a group of actors performed the founding act in the place where, under the shadow of a majagua tree, the French-born Spanish military Luis De Clouet officiated the opening ceremony on April 22, 1819.

The notes of Cienfuegos Anthem, written on the occasion of the centenary celebrations, set the martial tone of the event that opened Cienfuegos Culture Week, 250 kilometers southeast of the capital.

Architect Irán Millán, director of the Curator's Office of the City, gave Eduardo Coll, president of the Municipal Government, the memories of the restoration and conservation works of the historical center carried out during the last 12 months.

The condition of Distinguished Citizen to the baseball player Antonio Muñoz, former captain of the national team, and the Shield of the City to the teacher Félix Colina, were granted by the municipal government body in the ceremony.

In the facade of the Provincial Museum, former Spanish Casino (1984), the flag of the town and a fabric with the text of the foundation act of the colony Fernandina de Jagua were raised, original urban core that 10 years later adopted its current name.

The planting of a jagua tree, species that appears in the shield of the city, and a tribute to the founder in the tomb that holds his remains in the cemetery Tomás Acea (National Monument) completed the official acts.


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