- April 10, 2020 -
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Cuba detains eight for subtracting facemasks and other sanitary means from a warehouse

Eight Cubans were detained in Havana accused of subtracting facemasks and other articles of sanitary use to sell on the black market, amid the current epidemiological situation caused by the coronavirus, the state media reported this Sunday. Those involved are workers in a warehouse of medical means in the Cuban capital, drivers linked to the Ministry of Public Health and a transportation division, as well as other citizens with no labor links, according to the note issued by the provincial Prosecutor's Office published by the newspaper Tribuna de La Habana. The subtraction includes 455 boxes of facemasks with a total of 4,550 units and other medical resources that were reserved in the Basic Unit of Ensume Warehouses for emergencies in the event of disasters, the report specifies. In addition, it says that during the investigations the authorities seized 3,505 facemasks, medical gowns, scalpels, suture thread, surgical forceps and other medical means, in searches made at the homes of some of those involved. The Havana Prosecutor's Office indicated that the eight accused, in provisional custody for crimes considered “serious,” will have their rights and guarantees respected, but warned that their responsibilities will be individualized and that “the full weight of the...

Aid from e-commerce giant Alibaba could not reach Cuba due to the U.S. embargo against the island. Photo: cubachina.wordpress.com

Alibaba’s sanitary aid to Cuba thwarted by U.S. embargo

Cuba denounced this Wednesday that the restrictions of the U.S. embargo thwarted the donation of masks, ventilators and tests to detect the coronavirus sent by the Chinese electronic giant Alibaba to the island. “For Cuba, things are always more difficult. Even in times of pandemic, we Cubans are not allowed a breather,” said the Cuban ambassador to Beijing, Carlos Miguel Pereira, who tells how the transport company hired by Alibaba decided to not call at Cuban ports. https://twitter.com/JuantonioFdez/status/1245301139656114178 The U.S. entity “declined at the last minute the shipment” for Cuba hindered by the regulations of the “blockade,” as Havana calls the economic, financial and commercial embargo that Washington has maintained since 1962, strengthened since the arrival of President Donald Trump to the White House in 2017. The siege prevents, among other restrictions, the island from using the dollar in international transactions, prohibits Cubans from purchasing a product with more than 10% of U.S. components, and establishes a penalty of 180 days before entering the United States for ships calling at Cuban ports. The Trump administration has tightened restrictive measures against Cuba to try to suffocate its already fragile economy in retaliation for alleged aid to Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela. Help...

Photo: EFE.

Brazil summons Cuban doctors who are still in the country to combat COVID-19

The Brazilian government summoned this Thursday the Cuban doctors who decided to remain in the country after the end of a questioned binational cooperation program, to provide care in isolated and remote municipalities and help combat COVID-19. After several months of announcements and negotiations, the Ministry of Health published this Thursday in an extraordinary edition of the Diario Oficial de la Unión the decree by which it allows Cubans to enroll in the healthcare program in remote and impoverished areas, known as Doctors for Brazil. The island’s physicians will be able to fill the quotas that were not accepted by the Brazilians to provide care in the most isolated municipalities of the country or in medical centers in the peripheries and to reinforce the campaigns against COVID-19, a pandemic that has so far left 77 dead and 2,915 confirmed cases in Brazil. The quotas had initially been offered to doctors trained in Brazil or to Brazilians and foreigners graduated abroad but with a recognized degree in the country, and the offer has now been extended to foreigners who have not approved their training in the country. In this situation are the close to 1,800 Cuban doctors who preferred to stay...

A woman goes to vote in the primaries in Pensacola, Florida, on March 17, 2020. Photo: Mike Kittrell/EFE

The coronavirus, protagonist of primaries in Florida

Gloves, some masks, a safe distance, a lot of disinfectant and, above all, few voters is what has been seen this Tuesday in the electoral centers of southeast Florida, open, as in the entire state, for primaries marked by the coronavirus pandemic. Many have chosen to stay home so as not to take risks with COVID-19, something that civic organizations feared would happen and that is why they asked for the extension of the vote by mail, but Florida Governor Ron DeSantis ruled this out. Others like Jorge José Atucha decided to exercise their democratic right and go to the polls. “There are many people who are in quarantine or are at home and it is possible that this is affecting, although people are going out,” the 72-year-old citizen of Cuban origin who voted at a center in Doral, a city ​​of Miami-Dade County, told the EFE agency. Few voters and very few protected persons EFE visited half a dozen voting centers in different places in Miami-Dade on Tuesday and could verify that the vast majority of voters did not wear facemasks or protective gloves. Not many were hidden behind their masks to avoid getting infected. Voting in Florida, one...

Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega and Rosario Murillo, his wife and vice president. Photo: AP.

Cuba to send doctors and pharmaceuticals to Nicaragua to face coronavirus

The Nicaraguan government announced this Monday that Cuba will send a brigade of doctors and pharmaceuticals to help tackle the coronavirus pandemic, which so far has not presented a single case in the Central American country, according to authorities. In an address, the first lady and vice president, Rosario Murillo, affirmed that Cuba will send “virologists, epidemiologists, intensivist clinical doctors, all this following the protocols, treatments and everything corresponding in relation to the 22 medicaments they have successfully applied in different countries, and mainly in China.” Murillo did not mention the treatment that Cuba will send to Nicaragua, however, Interferon Alfa 2B is one of the drugs with which COVID-19 has been treated in China. Interferon is among the products classified as “star of Cuba’s biotechnology,” and is also used in the Caribbean country for viral infections caused by HIV, the human papilloma virus, as well as hepatitis types B and C. “They were also requested by some regions of Italy, of Spain, we understand that there are other States that have already requested the medicaments, which have been applied successfully according to these protocols, in China for example,” said the first lady. Murillo also stated that the medicament “arrived...

Spaniard Álvaro de Marichalar’s Cuban stopover during his trip around the world on jet ski. Photo: abc.es

A Spaniard traveling the world on jet ski makes stopover in Cuba

Spaniard Álvaro de Marichalar is sailing with his jet ski on the coasts of Cuba, during this week’s stopover of his voyage to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the first trip around the world of Magallanes and Elcano. After arriving Monday to the city of Baracoa from Haiti, and escorted by professionals from the Hemingway International Yacht Club of Cuba, Marichalar stopped at several places on the Cuban coast until he reached Cayo Guillermo, on the island’s central north coast. https://twitter.com/DeMarichalar/status/1209924513921732608?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1209924513921732608&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fun-espanol-que-viaja-el-mundo-en-moto-acuatica-hace-escala-en-cuba%2F From there he began a journey to Havana this Friday, where he plans to arrive at dawn on Saturday. “Arriving in Cuba is very important in this journey, because it means honoring a sister nation, like all Latin America but perhaps more, because of the temporary proximity,” said the 58-year-old navigator and businessman from Navarra. Coinciding with the historical date of the 500 years of the first circumnavigation, Marichalar began his peculiar trip around the world on jet ski on August 10 in Seville, and it will take him approximately two and a half years, he said. His traveling concern has led him in this new project to go around the world to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the...

Carmen Herrera while working on the adaptation of her work, executed in 1987. Photo: Jonathan Marder & Company/EFE.

Carmen Herrera, the 104-year-old Cuban painter, will have a mural on the streets of New York

The streets of East Harlem, in New York, one of the areas where the largest Latino population in Manhattan is concentrated, at the end of April will have a huge mural by Carmen Herrera, the 104-year-old Cuban artist whose work started being recognized just about fifteen years ago. The piece is titled Un Dos Tres and is more than 16 meters long and 5 meters high and will be located on the facade of the Artistic and Academic College of East Manhattan. As of April 18, students of the Publicolor program, a project designed for young people belonging to communities at risk of exclusion, will be responsible for materializing it. “I am very proud to offer this image to the Spanish Harlem (as the area is known),” Herrera said in a statement, adding: “In particular, I am proud that Publicolor students, many of whom speak Spanish, such as I, are being the ones to create it.” Un Dos Tres is a “free adaptation” the artist has made of a 1987 painting titled Diagonal, with black and white lines to form several square and rhomboid figures. https://oncubanews.com/cultura/artes-visuales/subastan-cuadro-de-la-cubana-carmen-herrera-por-29-millones-de-dolares/ “I selected several images and reduced my options to the one that best suited...

A state transportation inspector at a bus stop in Havana. Photo: Joyme Cuan/Tribuna de La Habana/Archive.

Cuba sanctions state enterprises for not helping with public transportation

The Cuban authorities have applied 773 sanctions to enterprises, most of them state-owned, whose “unsupportive” officials did not stop their vehicles to pick up other people, in the middle of the economic crisis and the shortage of fuel affecting the island. The measures were announced by the General Directorate of Provincial Transportation of Havana (DGTPH), which has deployed dozens of inspectors at the saturated bus stops in the Cuban capital to control that vehicles belonging to enterprises and state agencies, provided they have room, stop and transport citizens who need it. Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel called on the drivers of state vehicles months ago to help alleviate the problems that the shortage of fuel is causing in the already overflowing public transportation. https://oncubanews.com/cuba/baja-la-actividad-del-transporte-en-2019-en-cuba/ Last October, a state media published a photo of the president’s official caravan stopping to pick up people waiting for a transport on a street in western Havana, and around those same days Díaz-Canel was publicly outraged with officials with state cars that pass by the crowded stops. Buying a car is a luxury within the reach of very few in Cuba, where the State has exclusivity on the importation of new cars and taxes them several...

Illustrative image. Photo: John Moore/Getty Images

U.S. deports 119 Cubans, the second group during Trump administration

Immigration authorities in the United States deported 119 Cubans on a single flight to Havana, the second largest group repatriated during the Donald Trump administration, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency reported this Tuesday. Néstor Yglesias, spokesperson for ICE, told EFE that immigrants were deported last Friday, without giving further details. Last September, 120 Cubans were deported on another flight as part of an agreement signed during the last days of the presidency of Barack Obama (2009-2017) whereby the island promised to receive returnees. ICE explained then that it was the “largest” group expelled from the country under said joint declaration, signed on January 12, 2017. https://oncubanews.com/cuba-ee-uu/eeuu-deporta-120-cubanos-en-la-mayor-expulsion-hasta-la-fecha/ “The United States...will deport to the Republic of Cuba, and the Republic of Cuba...will receive all Cuban citizens who...the United States considers have tried to enter or remain in that country irregularly,” notes the 2017 statement. On that date, Obama also canceled the “dry foot/wet foot” policy enacted in 1995, whereby Cubans who touched U.S. territory were favored with the Cuban Adjustment Act and could stay in the country and even obtain permanent residence, while the others were deported to the island. Shortly before the elimination of this benefit, an unusual arrival...

Headquarters of the Western Union company in Denver, Colorado. Photo: Business Wire.

Cuban government responds to suspension of Western Union’s sending of remittances

Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel this Friday responded to the suspension of the sending of remittances to the island from outside the United States applied by the Western Union company, a decision attributed to the hardline policies of U.S. President Donald Trump. “Another measure against the Cuban people. This is how the empire acts, with total arrogance and contempt, but no one will stop us,” the Cuban president wrote on Twitter. https://twitter.com/DiazCanelB/status/1233363817750507525?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1233363817750507525&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fgobierno-cubano-responde-a-suspension-de-envios-de-la-western-union%2F Díaz-Canel’s reaction comes a day after Western Union announced that as of this week, remittances can no longer be sent to Cuba from third countries, leaving only the possibility of doing so from the United States. The company justified its decision because of the difficulties to carry out this type of operations, in an apparent reference to the embargo that Washington imposes on Havana, strengthened by Trump with new sanctions that especially the last year have generated a strong impact on the Cuban economy. Among them, last September the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced the prohibition of so-called “U-turn” transactions, preventing banking institutions under U.S. jurisdiction from processing certain transfers of funds to Cuba even if they originate and end outside the United States. It also decreed...

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez during his speech at the Human Rights Council, in Geneva, Switzerland, on February 25, 2020. Photo: @BrunoRgezP/Twitter.

Cuba aspires to return to the Human Rights Council

Cuba will try to again occupy one of the 47 seats on the UN Human Rights Council, Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla announced this Tuesday. In an address at that forum, the foreign minister reaffirmed “Cuba's support for this Council” and that it has decided “to present its candidacy for membership for the period 2021-2023. I can assure you that we will continue to act here with our own constructive voice.” Cuba formed part of this intergovernmental body in two consecutive periods (2014-2016 and 2017-2019), after which the regulation did not allow another re-election. Cuba's main ally in Latin America, Venezuela, has just returned to the Human Rights Council, following an election that generated condemnation from the United States and other Western countries, as well as from prestigious international NGOs. https://twitter.com/BrunoRguezP/status/1232301349083197440?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1232301349083197440&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcuba-aspira-a-regresar-al-consejo-de-derechos-humanos%2F The biggest criticism was that a government accused of suppressing its opponents, as well as having led the country into a humanitarian crisis, was being given a seat on the Council. Several countries accuse the Cuban government of the same. On the other hand, Minister Rodríguez denounced in his speech before the Council the measures with which the U.S. government has intensified in recent months the blockade of...

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez. Photo: Desmond Boylan/AP.

Cuban government criticizes U.S. sanctions against Russian company Rosneft

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez described the U.S. economic sanctions against the commercial subsidiary of the Russian corporation Rosneft for assisting Venezuela in its oil foreign trade as a “violation” of international laws. The sanctions issued this Tuesday by the U.S. Department of the Treasury against Rosneft Trading (based in Switzerland) are “a new violation of International Law and the universally recognized rules of commerce,” said the Cuban foreign minister through his Twitter account. https://twitter.com/BrunoRguezP/status/1229898658281349121?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1229898658281349121&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fgobierno-cubano-critica-sanciones-de-eeuu-a-empresa-rusa-rosneft%2F Rodríguez added that the U.S. authorities “have no right to impose unilateral measures on entities of other States that trade with Venezuela.” In this way and as expected, the Cuban government aligns with that of Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela, its main partner and supporter, who in the first place protested the decision of the U.S. executive. Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza described the sanctions as “arbitrary” and said they “violate the right to free trade and free enterprise.” The White House announced the freezing of Rosneft Trading’s assets and the ban on financial operations with its president, Didier Casimiro, and warned other energy companies that similar measures will be taken if they collaborate with the Maduro regime. Rosneft is one of the most active corporations...

Cuban migrants in a shelter in the Ciudad Juárez border, in the state of Chihuahua (Mexico). Photo: Alejandro Bringas / EFE / Archive.

Study: Trump’s program for migrants causes long-term trauma

Migrant families, and especially children, who are waiting in Mexico for asylum in the United States, are facing severe stress and trauma with “long-term” consequences, warned Human Rights Watch (HRW) this Wednesday. When assessing the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) program, known as “Remain in Mexico,” which the administration of President Donald Trump began implementing on January 29 last year, HRW warned that this policy exposes applicants to asylum to violence and diseases. The program allows Washington to return to the neighboring country those undocumented immigrants who arrive at the border and request asylum (no matter where they come from) to wait for their cases to be resolved in the U.S., which can take years. Fear and anxiety, a constant “We are beginning to believe that there is no safe place where we can go and be accepted,” said Nicola A., one of those interviewed between November 2019 and January 2020 for this study. Nicola confessed that asylum seekers feel “fear and anxiety in Mexico” because their kidnappers still persecute them, but they also fear being “separated and detained again in the horrible conditions of immigration detention.” https://oncubanews.com/mundo/america-latina/migrantes-cubanos-huyen-de-un-centro-de-detencion-en-mexico/ “I noticed that there were numerous people with lice, as well as people...

Cuban writer Leonardo Padura during the Hay Festival in Cartagena, Colombia, in late January. Photo: EFE

Padura presents his reedited novels at Havana Book Fair

The first installment of a tetralogy of reedited novels by Cuban writer Leonardo Padura under the title Las cuatro estaciones (The Four Seasons) this Sunday was added to the literary offers of the 29th Havana International Book Fair. Padura, winner of the 2012 National Prize for Literature and that of the Princess of Asturias in Literature in 2015, is one of the most internationally acclaimed Cuban writers, but paradoxically his work has small print runs in Cuba and readers devour his books every time they appear in some literary space on the island. The Book Fair has included in its program this year the detective novel duet of Pasado perfecto (Havana Blue) and Vientos de cuaresma (Havana Gold), which have as their protagonist Detective Mario Conde, the most famous character in Padura’s literary work. Two other novels―Máscaras (Havana Red) and Paisaje de otoño (Havana Black)―will reappear in the second volume to round off this new edition published by the label of the publishing house of the Union of Writers and Artists of Cuba (UNEAC). “In these years of so many conflicts and complex social situations, I created Mario Conde, a character who embodies a different way of seeing life,” Padura...

Cars wait for fuel supply at a gas station in Havana. Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

Crisis and lines for fuel and toiletries throughout Cuba

Cuba is once again experiencing fuel shortage problems that have caused long lines at gas stations throughout the country, while Cubans are also struggling these days to get toiletries and other basic products such as detergent and toilet paper. The supply of diesel and gasoline has had moments of instability since last September the authorities denounced that the new U.S. sanctions were hindering the arrival of oil ships to the island, but the crisis has worsened since the end of last week. For now, and unlike what happened at the end of last year, the Cuban executive has not issued any statement to explain if new measures or restrictions will be adopted, although the managers of some gas stations are explaining to customers that they only have a limited amount of daily fuel to sell to private individuals who pay in cash. Once that amount runs out, private individuals must wait until the next day because the rest of the supply is reserved for state vehicles and other entities that have prepaid cards. https://oncubanews.com/en/cuba/cuba-reorganizes-transportation-in-face-of-energy-crisis/ The WhatsApp of solidarity Since the problems began, groups have multiplied in mobile applications such as WhatsApp or Telegram in which users share information about where...

Photo: Kaloian

Caravan today in Miami to protest suspension of flights to Cuba

The Alianza Martiana group, which is in favor of a “normalization” of relations between Cuba and the United States, has convened an automobile caravan that this Saturday will pass through Calle Ocho in Miami, Florida, to demand that the Trump administration restore charter flights to the island. “What’s important is the will to defend the rights to travel to Cuba and visit the family. Those are also human rights,” Max Lesnik, president of the Alianza Martiana, whose headquarters is located in this Florida city, told EFE this Friday. The caravan, under the slogan “Nothing and no one against the Cuban family,” will pass through the famous Calle Ocho, the meeting point of the anti-Castro Cuban exile. The call is for “the cars to travel the route with posters for family reunion.” Also “against the Trump measures that affect Cuban families,” said Lesnik. “In healthy peace and without seeking conflict with anyone, not even with those who defend Trump,” he said. https://www.facebook.com/CafeCubanAmericansForEngagement/photos/a.176876845768054/2534534796668902/?type=3 *Important*: This Saturday, February 8 at 11:00 AM, demonstration in #Miami in favor of #No restrictions to trips to #Cuba. 12 St. SW between 97 and 95 avenues. Raise your voice! See you there! <3 Posted by Cuban Americans...

Photo: Kaloian

Cuba authorizes sale of automobiles with 10 percent discount

The Cuban government announced this Thursday that it will sell imported vehicles in freely convertible currency to individuals as of next February 24 with a 10 percent discount, as part of the measures put in place in order to collect foreign exchange and alleviate the economy’s liquidity crisis. The commercialization of automobiles was already being carried out in the country since 2014, but then they were only sold in Cuban convertible pesos. In announcing the new measure, Cuban Minister of Transportation Eduardo Rodríguez said that decision is based on “the legitimate need of many citizens to have a means to move when public transportation, logically, fails to cover the entire vast demand for daily mobility.” The minister acknowledged that this decision will not have a direct impact on the majority of the population, but explained that the revenue generated from the sales will go to a fund to acquire spare parts in order to reinstate buses and other vehicles of the public transportation service that today are paralyzed, as well as restoring the investment plans for those means. https://oncubanews.com/cuba/un-carro-solo-un-carro/ For the time being, only in Havana Minister of Finance and Prices Meisi Bolaños specified that the prices are the same...

Detail of the facade of the Meliá Cohiba Hotel, in Havana. Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

U.S. vetoes entry of Meliá CEO for doing business in Cuba

The United States has forbidden Meliá CEO Gabriel Escarrer from entering the country as a result of the application of the Helms-Burton Act due to the activity of one of the group's subsidiaries in Cuba, where two hotels in the Holguín region operate. The company confirmed the ban this Wednesday, advanced by Vozpópuli. The hotels, under management between Meliá's subsidiary and two Cuban public entities, are located on a plot of land expropriated by the Cuban regime in the late 1950s from the Sánchez Hill family, which has requested compensation. According to the Spanish company, the family also initiated a lawsuit in Spain that was dismissed by the first instance courts. https://oncubanews.com/en/cuba/melia-admits-pressures-for-working-in-cuba/ Last October the U.S. Department of State imposed on Escarrer a series of conditions to enter the country, which the company believes are not acceptable and are contrary to European regulations. Title III of the Helms-Burton Act provides that any U.S. citizen or company, whose properties in Cuba had been expropriated by the Cuban government, can file lawsuits against third parties who own, control or obtain benefits with those properties, sources from the Pérez Llorca office have explained. That section of the act had remained without effect since...

U.S. President Donald Trump (r), along with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (l), during a ceremony at the White House in Washington, where Trump described his peace plan for the Middle East as a “realistic solution of two States,” although he proposed to reserve for Israel part of the West Bank and Jerusalem as its “integral capital.” Photo: EFE/Michael Reynolds.

Cuban foreign minister rejects Trump’s peace plan for Middle East

Cuba repudiated this Wednesday the “biased and misleading” peace plan announced by U.S. President Donald Trump for the Middle East, considering that it underpins Israel’s position in the disputed territories and violates the rights of the Palestinians. “I reject the biased and misleading U.S. peace plan that enshrines the Israeli occupation and violates the inalienable right of the Palestinians to have their own State on the pre-1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as capital and the return of refugees,” Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez wrote on Twitter. https://twitter.com/BrunoRguezP/status/1222599731676897280?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1222599731676897280&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba-ee-uu%2Fcanciller-de-cuba-repudia-plan-de-paz-de-trump-para-oriente-medio%2F Hours before and also in his social network account, Rodríguez reiterated his criticism of the U.S. government for its desire for “imperialist domain,” its way of treating Latin America and the Caribbean as a “subordinate region,” while condemning Washington's “aggressiveness” against Cuba. The island, which is going through a tense moment in relations with the U.S., has been aligned with the cause of Palestine since it established relations with the Arab nation several decades ago. Havana defends a “peaceful and lasting” solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict based on the creation of two different states and Palestine’s total sovereignty. https://oncubanews.com/cuba/cuba-expresa-energica-condena-a-que-eeuu-reconozca-el-golan-como-territorio-de-israel/ The proposal announced by Trump supports Israel's annexation of the Jordan Valley, in addition...

Still given by the Sundance Festival that shows a group of children in Havana, in an image from the documentary “Epicenter,” by Austrian filmmaker Hubert Sauper. Photo: Sundance Festival /EFE.

From imperialism to tourism: Cuba lands in Sundance with “Epicenter”

From the struggle against imperialism to the “soft power” of mass tourism, Cuba’s soul and the island’s identity conflict land in Sundance with Epicenter, an amazing and poetic documentary focused on Cuban children filmed by Austrian Hubert Sauper “The history of Europe, America and Africa is a history of hundreds of years of imperialism and anti-imperialism, colonization and anti-colonization,” said this filmmaker who was nominated for an Oscar with Darwin’s Nightmare (2004). “Cuba deals with the same issues and is the 'epicenter' of the Americas: it is geographically in the center, it was a line of collision in America between communism and capitalism with the Cold War and the Missile Crisis, and was the epicenter of the Spanish Empire…. Slavery, colonialism and the globalization of power have a direct line and everything is found in Havana,” he added. Far from being a customary, narrative documentary with explanations from experts, Epicenter presents a much more cunning and subtle look when showing its cards through the voice of Cuban children, here called “the little prophets.” “It isn’t a historical documentary: it is a film told by 10 children from Havana. It is they who tell about the end of an Empire (the...

Coronavirus 2019-nCoV, responsible for the so-called Wuhan pneumonia. Image: theolivepress.es

Cuba says it has no cases of coronavirus and adopts prevention measures

The Cuban government announced this Monday that no case of the new Chinese coronavirus has been registered in the country, although the authorities have adopted sanitary control measures at the borders and surveillance of incoming travelers. “In our country no case has been reported and there are no suspicions and no people under any surveillance,” said the National Director of Epidemiology of the Cuban Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP), Francisco Durán, cited by state media. The specialist explained that on the island the control of travelers is being intensified at ports and airports, entry points of the new coronavirus―which causes pneumonia―originating in the Chinese city of Wuhan, from where it has spread to other areas of the Asian nation and other countries. He also indicated that “adequate vigilance” is maintained for all persons from their arrival in Cuba, which in principle includes at first a general declaration of health of the vessel, and another of each traveler. https://oncubanews.com/cuba/ciencia/salud-en-cuba/presidente-de-china-situacion-grave-por-el-coronavirus/ About 80 deaths have been registered in China to date due to the disease―which is transmitted from person to person―and more than 2,700 persons infected with the lethal coronavirus, that has been provisionally called “2019-nCoV” by the World Health Organization (WHO), have...

Photo: Otmaro Rodríguez.

Cuba denies responsibility in Bolivia’s decision to suspend relations

Cuba “categorically” rejected this Saturday the “pretexts and unfounded accusations” of Bolivia to suspend relations with the island, denied having responsibility in the decision and accused the interim government of Jeanine Áñez of trying to deteriorate ties between the two countries. “Cuba rejects pretexts and unfounded accusations by Bolivia’s coup authorities to suspend diplomatic relations. Since their violent rise to power, they have developed systematic actions to deteriorate bilateral ties,” said Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez on Twitter. La Paz announced this Friday that it would suspend diplomatic ties with Cuba―without being a total rupture―due to “the permanent hostility and constant insults” expressed by Rodríguez in several tweets in which he uses harsh language against Áñez. https://twitter.com/BrunoRguezP/status/1221246078030356481?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1221246078030356481&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Fcuba-niega-responsabilidad-en-decision-de-bolivia-de-suspender-relaciones%2F Bilateral tension After remaining silent for more than a day, the Cuban foreign minister insisted on Twitter that “hostility and offenses” have not come from Havana, but from the Bolivian interim government, which he accuses of perpetrating a coup against former President Evo Morales, a close ally of Cuba. “We have acted with patience and prudence, avoiding confrontation despite the reproachable performance of the coup plotters,” Rodríguez wrote. https://oncubanews.com/cuba/canciller-cubano-discurso-de-la-presidenta-boliviana-son-vulgares-mentiras/ In an extensive press release issued this Saturday, the Cuban Foreign Ministry insisted that...

Cuban President Díaz-Canel greeting people at the bus terminal in the province of Sancti Spíritus. Photo: Ernesto Mastrascusa/EFE.

Díaz-Canel committed to monetary unification to stabilize economy

The monetary and exchange rate unification prepared by the Cuban government will help to “stabilize” the island’s economic conditions and will make it possible “to do many more things,” said the country's president, Miguel Díaz-Canel. That “complex” process, for which there is still no date announced, “is one of the things that will help stabilize conditions a bit and starting then you can do many more things,” said the president in statements to the foreign media, among them EFE, during a visit to the central province of Sancti Spíritus. The elimination of two currencies has become the Cuban government’s priority in recent months when faced by the crisis that is affecting the country, caused by the intensification of the U.S. embargo with new sanctions and the economic collapse of Venezuela, the island’s main ally, among other factors. In recent months the authorities have taken experimental steps but the exact date on which the CUC will be out of circulation is unknown, which has caused effects such as its devaluation against the dollar in the informal market. “There are many things we are organizing and of course the process in which we have been advancing and that is very complex because...

January 16, 2020 photo showing two pelicans perched on two boats, in Villa Guajimico, in Cienfuegos. EFE/Yander Zamora.

Cuba, guest country in ecotourism fair in Spain

Cuba will be the guest country of the fourth edition of the Doñana Natural Life Ecotourism Fair, which will take place April 16-19 in the Spanish town of El Rocío, in Huelva, and will be focused on birdwatching as a fundamental element of biodiversity and of the sector’s differentiated tourist value. For this, a program of activities and contents has been designed to take an in-depth look at the importance of the region’s ornithology that is gaining extraordinary importance as a place of passage, breeding and wintering for thousands of European and African birds, the organization announced in a press release. https://twitter.com/mancondado/status/1220754456763162627?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1220754456763162627&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Foncubanews.com%2Fcuba%2Feconomia%2Fturismo%2Fcuba-pais-invitado-en-feria-de-ecoturismo-en-espana%2F In the region of Doñana, almost 300 bird species can be sighted, including the Iberian imperial eagle, in serious danger of extinction. That is why the Fair’s technical program will dedicate its space of knowledge to the debate on birdwatching as an undisputed pillar of ecotourism, for which the presence of a representative of one of the most important international fairs in this area, the Birdwatching Fair, is expected, in addition to the specialized media related to birds. The fourth edition of Doñana Natural Life will feature an area for companies specializing in optical and photography products/services for...

Cuban resident in Miami accused of threatening to kill people of different minorities. Photo: themediahq.com/

Cuban resident in Miami accused of threatening to kill gays, Afro-Americans and Latinos

A 19-year-old was jailed in Miami as the alleged author of death threats on Twitter against Afro-Americans, Colombians, Nicaraguans and homosexuals, because he was tired of “oppression against Cubans,” local media reported. “Watch out, we’re going to hit the streets,” wrote Lázaro Lesteiro, a native of Havana's San Miguel del Padrón neighborhood, who was officially accused of threatening in writing to kill or wound someone and must deposit a bail of 75,000 dollars on the orders of Judge Mindy S. Glazer. Even if he pays bail, he will remain by court order under house arrest while his case is resolved. https://oncubanews.com/mundo/ee-uu/aumentan-crimenes-de-odio-en-eeuu/ The young man was arrested last Tuesday in the apartment where he lives with his mother in Hialeah, a city in Miami-Dade County mostly inhabited by Cubans. Hialeah Police was previously warned by the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives of the threats on a Twitter account that corresponded to Lesteiro. One of the messages referred to plans to perpetrate a massacre last Tuesday in Little Havana, the neighborhood where the first Cubans who arrived in Miami settled after the triumph of the revolution in 1959, police spokespersons told local media. The author of the messages warned...

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