Cuban Civil Society Delegation to Attend Forums in Panama


28 March, 2015

seventh summit of the americasOver one hundred representatives of Cuban civil society will participate in forums that will run parallel to the 7th Summit of the Americas, in Panama.

Intellectuals, farmers, cooperative members, entrepreneurs, academics and others 

The large group includes intellectuals, farmers, cooperative members, entrepreneurs, academics and other social actors who will take to Panama the proposals issued in numerous civil society meetings held over the past weeks on the island.

Cuba will also be represented at the forums of university rectors and entrepreneurs.

To exchange views and share experiences in an open and constructive way

The goal of the Cuban delegation is to exchange, in an open and constructive way, with other representatives of the hemisphere and convey Cuban experiences in issues such as governance, democracy, education, health, energy, sustainable development, innovation and use of new information technologies, among others.

The Cuban delegation will also join other progressive organizations at the Summit of the Peoples and at the meeting of the Social Movements of Our America, to take place April 9-11.

The island´s representatives are also scheduled to participate at a gathering in solidarity with the progressive causes of Latin America and the Caribbean, which will be held at the University of Panama on April 11.

Source: Cuban Civil Society Delegation to Attend Forums in Panama

Cubans hold discussions in preparation for the 7th Summit of the Americas

Sources:  Granma, Prensa Latina
March 26, 2015

During a Youth Forum entitled ‘Youth and the Americas we want’ held yesterday, March 25, Cuban students, and young workers, artists and social leaders discussed their realities, offering opinions and proposals to be shared at the upcoming Seventh Summit of the Americas Youth Forum, to be held in Panama, April 8-10, which Cuba will be attending for the first time.

cuban youthoffer their perspective on the americasDebates took place at various sites at the University of Havana and presented at the Pabellón Cuba were panel discussions on several topics including security, the environment, education, health, democratic governing and citizen participation.

Cuban Civil Society

Two weeks ago, on March 17, Cuban Civil Society held a similar event where issues such as democratic governance and citizen participation were addressed in preparation for the Civil Society Forum of the  Summit.


In the discussions, religious leader Orlando Gutierrez expressed his solidarity with Venezuela as they faced the  hostile US policy and demanded respect for the Bolivarian Constitution and the right of the South American country to self-determination.

Opportunities for youth in Cuban society

Journalist Yoerky Sánchez outlined the many opportunities that were open to Cuban youth to participate in the political life and the process of decision-making in their nation based on the characteristics of the electoral system of the island, which allows youth to be elected as councillors at the age of 16 and as deputies at 18.

Joel Suarez from the Martin Luther King Memorial Center proposed to highlight the contributions of the constitutions of countries such as Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador in terms of democracy and citizen rights.

Participation of workers in Cuban society

In trade union matters, Heriberto Gonzalez, member of the America’s Office of the World Trade Unions Federation, highlighted the participation of Cuban workers in the social life of the country and the fact that their rights were guaranteed.

Participants also recommended that their representatives at the Summit raise the need to continue the fight against the economic blockade imposed for over half a century to Cuba by the United State, despite the international rejection.

In addition to democratic governance and citizen participation in this Cuban Civil Society Forum, other issues such as Migration, Security, Energy, Environment, Health and Education were also addressed.

Cuba’s achievements in education and health

Cuba’s achievements in education and health, recognized worldwide, would not be possible without the joint participation of actors and social organizations, scientific societies and professional associations, said Jaime Gomez, moderator of a working group based in Casa del ALBA Cultural.

With this forum, the Cuban civil society aims to encourage reflection and make recommendations to the national delegation representing Cuba in Panama, as well as to generate concrete actions to address the current challenges in the Americas.

Cuban Civil Society Debates Towards Seventh Summit of the Americas  Prensa Latina
Cuba’s Youth Offers its perspectives on the Americas  Granma

Over 5 Million Signatures against US’ Aggressions on Venezuela

Obama venezuela is not a threat

As of early Sunday morning, 5 million, 1,058 signatures had been collected, Mayor Jorge Rodriguez announced.

Venezuelan officials reported on Sunday that over 5 million signatures have been collected in the campaign against President Barack Obama’s March 9 executive order arbitrarily declaring Venezuela an extraordinary threat to its national security to justify further aggressions against the South American country.

Mayor of the municipality Libertador de Caracas, the country’s capital, Jorge Rodriguez, who also heads the Campaign “ObamaRepealtheDecreeNow,” indicated that as of this Sunday morning just over 5 million signatures had been collected.

The aim – 10 million signatures for the Summit of the Americas

The aim of the campaign is to gather at least 10 million signatures to be presented at the Summit of the Americas, which is scheduled to take place in Panama City next April 10 and 11.

Rodriguez told state-owned Venezuelan Television (VTV) that the campaign has been very well received by Venezuelans, who have gone to the different designated locations in the country to sign the petition.

“As of this Sunday morning, 5 million 1,058 signatures have been collected in solidarity with the defense of the sovereignty of Venezuela,” Rodriguez said.

The mayor condemned Washington’s newest aggressions against Venezuela, and described them as acts of interference in the internal affairs of the country and against the democratically elected government of President Nicolas Maduro.

Widespread condemnation around the world of Obama’s executive order

The Obama executive order on Venezuela has been widely condemned around the world and by international organizations such as the Organization of American States, UNASUR, CELAC, among many others.

A recent poll showed that 92 percent of Venezuelans reject any U.S. intervention in the country, while 64 percent disagreed with sanctions imposed on Venezuelan officials by Washington,  while 62 percent thought that the U.S. government’s perception of what is really happening in Venezuela was wrong.

Source: Over 5 Million Signatures against US’ Aggressions on Venezuela  TeleSUR

Bolivia: Movement Towards Socialism wins again

Source: TeleSUR
March 29, 2015

Unofficial exit polls place the governing party ahead in six out of nine provinces. The Bolivian Movement Towards Socialism (MAS) — President Evo Morales’ party — would have won most of the country’s local governments after Sunday’s elections, according to unofficial exit polls.

Bolivia MAS wins againThe governing party the polls suggest that MAS obtained victories in six out of nine provinces.

Meanwhile the remaining provinces would be ruled by the opposition, together with the city of El Alto, in La Paz province. In the provinces of Pando and Cochabamba the governing party registered victories with over 60 percent of the ballots, with 66.3 and 60.1 respectively.

In the province of Oruro, MAS won with 55 percent of the votes. Similarly in Potosi, the government party won with 57.1 percent.

The lowest result would have been in Beni, where — according to the exit polls — MAS would have won with 38.4 percent of the votes.

Official results are expected after midnight local time in Bolivia.

Source:  Bolivia’s MAS Party Wins Majority In Local Governments  TeleSUR

Mujica Leads Uruguay’s Venezuela Solidarity March


March 24 2015

Jose Mujica, Uruguay’s much-loved former president, led a march in the capital city Montevideo for “peace in Latin America” and “in solidarity with the people of Venezuela.”

mujica leads march in support of venezuela 1

Hundreds of Uruguayans walked alongside Pepe and Vice President Raul Sendic, demanding that the United States withdraws its declaration that Venezuela presents an “extraordinary” threat to “national security.”

mujica leads march in support of venezuela 2Mujica has been vocal in the outcry over the U.S. aggression towards Venezuela.

mujica 5Earlier this month, Mujica said that he was “fed up with (the U.S.) meddling” in internal Latin American business.

Commenting on U.S. President Barack Obama’s declaration that Venezuela presented a “national threat,” Mujica said that whoever says that the South American country could be “a threat” to the U.S. “has a screw loose.”

Source: Mujica Leads Uruguay’s Venezuela Solidarity March  venezuelanalysis

Cuban-trained Liberian medical specialists thankful to Cuban and Liberian governments

March 25 2015

Speaking on behalf of his fellow colleagues, the spokesman and head of the Liberian Foreign Students studying in Cuba, William Wesseh, lauded the Cuban Government for the opportunity and the hospitality accorded them while undergoing their studies in Cuba

Liberian Foreign Minister Augustine NgafuanThree Cuban-trained Liberian medical specialists have returned home after successfully completing studies in various medical fields, including Clinical Engineering, Clinical Bio-analysis, and Radiology & X-Ray respectively in Cuba. (Photo:  Liberian Foreign Minister Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan)

According to the Foreign Ministry in Monrovia, the three young Liberian medical professionals left here in 2008 under a Cuba-Liberia Bilateral Scholarship Program to pursue advanced medical studies in that part of the world, after they were recruited and vetted by the Civil Service Agency (CSA) and the Inter-Ministerial Scholarship Committee of the Ministry of Education.  The three specialists are William Wesseh, B.Sc  in Clinical Engineering; Michael Mator,  B.Sc in Clinical  Bio-analysis,  and  Varnjah  Quincy  Quiah,  BSc  in  Radiology & X-Ray.

The release indicated that the three specialists with requisite skills and knowledge are back to join their professional colleagues, who are impacting the country’s health sector, which is facing serious post Ebola technical and human resource challenges.

Cuban government lauded

Speaking on behalf of his fellow colleagues, the spokesman and head of the Liberian Foreign Students studying in Cuba, William Wesseh, lauded the Cuban Government for the opportunity and the hospitality accorded them while undergoing their studies in Cuba.

Mr. Wesseh, who acquired B.Sc in Clinical Engineering, said despite the huge challenges faced while undergoing studies in Cuba, they were three out of 12 candidates from Liberia, who successfully completed the studies, while one female Liberian candidate is left behind with one semester to complete her studies.

He thanked the Liberian government through the CSA and the Ministry of  Education for the  moral, technical and financial assistance rendered them,  which he noted, was significant  in making the realization of their dreams and aspiration, adding, “We have come back to contribute our quota to the Liberian society”.

The Liberian medical specialists also hailed authorities of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for its concern and support as well as intervention which he said impacted their learning processes while in that foreign land.

The students’ spokesperson paid special tribute to Foreign Minister Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan and the Assistant Minister for American Affairs, Hon. Sie-Teba Neufville whom he emphasized, had been very supportive and instrumental in ensuring their return home.

The release added that the field of Clinical Engineering basically deals with the purchase, installation, maintenance and repair of medical equipment or generally the regulation of medical equipment.

Clinical Bio-analysis is concerned with laboratory diagnosis of different types of diseases within the human body; while Radiology and X-Ray (medical Radiography and medical radio-physics) deals with the use of ionizing radiation in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases using CT-scan, M R I, ultra-sound, Mammogram and Radio-therapy.

Source: 3 Liberian medical specialists return home

Díaz-Canel emphasizes love shared by the peoples of Cuba and Namibia

Source:  Granma
March 23 2015
Deisy Francis Mexidor

Cuban Vice President Miguel Diaz-Canel met with new Namibian President Hage Geingob after his inauguration ceremony, and emphasized that the success of his visit to the country was based on the love shared by the two countries’ peoples.

cubans and namibians

Earlier during his visit, Diaz-Canel met with the country’s historic leader and founding father Sam Nujoma.

Diaz-Canel commented that the meeting with Geingob was an affectionate one, with the new President recalling his conversations with Fidel and Raúl during his last visit to Cuba.

fidel y hage geingob 2The Cuban Vice President reported that also discussed was Cuba collaboration in Namibia which, he said, will continue to expand.

A bi-national committee of experts to be established

Miguel Díaz-Canel BermúdezHe explained that, as a result of the visit, a bi-national committee of experts was to be established, “to evaluate all areas of cooperation, to see what fields we can open up and how to improve in areas where we are already.”

Diaz-Canel reported that, during the inauguration ceremony, he had the opportunity to greet several African heads of state, who expressed their affection and confidence in Cuba.

The Cuban Vice President visited three African countries this past week – Namibia, South Africa and Angola – and will conclude his international tour in India on Monday, after meeting with high-ranking leaders there. (PL)

Source:  Díaz-Canel emphasizes love shared by the peoples of Cuba and Namibia  Granma

Venezuela Hands Protest Letter to the US

Venezuela has sent a letter of protest to the United States over Washington’s new sanctions imposed on Venezuelan officials for allegedly cracking down on the country’s opposition.

Delcy Rodriguez 5Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez said in a press conference on Friday that the letter was delivered to the US embassy in the Venezuelan capital of Caracas.

Rodriguez added that the letter was an “emphatic note of protest” against US President Barack Obama’s executive order issued earlier this month.

On March 9, US President Barack Obama signed the order, labeling Venezuela an “extraordinary threat to national security.”

Under Obama’s order, the US property and bank accounts of seven Venezuelan officials, including former national guard chief Antonio Benavides, intelligence chief Gustavo Gonzales and national police chief Manuel Perez, will be frozen and they will be denied US visas.

Washington accuses the officials of rights violations in relation to last year’s protests in Venezuela.

Rodriguez further said the protest message “vehemently rejects” the US claim that Caracas is a threat, calling on Washington to revoke the order.

The decree “interferes in Venezuela’s internal affairs by labeling (the country) an unusual and extraordinary threat,” stated the top diplomat, adding, “We are delivering this note of vehement protest against the government of the United States in response to this legal blight.”

Rodriguez also said most countries in the world supported Caracas in its conflict with Washington, urging the US to “stop the aggressions and repeal the executive order.”

International and regional blocs, such as the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), Group of 77 plus China, Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (ALBA), Union of South American Nations, and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) have all condemned the decree signed by Obama, according to Rodriguez.

Source:  Venezuela sends protest letter to US over bans Press TV

4 Million Venezuelans Condemn US Sanctions

The number of signatories to petition calling for an end to sanctions has quadrupled in a matter of days.Over 4 million Venezuelans have signed a petition calling on U.S. President Barack Obama to repeal his executive order on Venezuela, Caracas Mayor Jorge Rodriguez announced Friday.

venezuela protest against imperialismAt the start of this week, the petition had just 1 million signatures.

Over 3.7 million tweets and retweets

Rodriguez told state media the signature drive is likely to heat up even more when volunteers begin a new door-to-door collection campaign on Friday. Online, he stated over 3.7 million tweets and retweets had been made supporting the petition campaign.

Launched just over a week ago, the petition calls on Obama to rescind a recent order declaring Venezuela a national security threat and hitting Caracas with new sanctions.

Urging “Obama to repeal the Executive Order against Venezuela …”

The petition can be signed here, and urges “Obama to repeal the Executive Order against Venezuela and normalize diplomatic relations with the legitimately elected government of President Nicolas Maduro and reaffirm the principles of mutual respect and non-interference in the internal affairs of countries.”

The Venezuelan government will take the signatures to the Summit of the Americas in Panama, to be held in April.

Condemned by Latin American nations and regional bodies

Along with the 4 million petition signatories, the U.S. sanctions have been condemned by Latin American nations and regional bodies.

The latest statement against the sanctions was issued Thursday by the Community of Latin American States (CELAC).

CELAC is made up of all of the countries of the Americas except the U.S. and Canada; all of its member countries voted unanimously for the resolution demanding the United States rescind the sanctions and engage in bilateral talks with Venezuela.

Source: 4 Million Venezuelans Condemn US Sanctions TeleSUR

Fidel Jr. seeks closer ties with major Russian city

Source: progresoweekly

Felipe Pagliery fidel jr 1Photo: Fidel Castro Díaz-Balart and Ambassador Emilio Losada García meet with Novosibirsk Mayor Anatoly Lokot
March 28, 2015

Vladimir GorodetskyFidel Castro Díaz-Balart, the Cuban leader’s eldest son, met Friday (March 27) in Novosibirsk with the city’s mayor, Anatoly Lokot, and the region’s governor, Vladimir Gorodetsky, (photo: right) to discuss closer relations between Cuba and the region in general and its scientific institutions in particular.

Castro was accompanied by the Cuban ambassador to Russia, Emilio Losada García, and the first secretary of the Cuban Embassy, Daniel Carrasco Vivanco.

During their stay in Novosibirsk, the Cuban representatives toured the scientific center known as the Novosibirsk Technopark, the Institute of Nuclear Physics of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Science (SBRAS), the Institute of Chemical Biology and Basic Medicine of the SBRAS, and Novosibirsk State University (NSU). They also met with representatives of the city’s scientific community.

The city of Novosibirsk is in southwestern Siberia. It is Russias third-largest city, after Moscow and St. Petersburg.

Fidel Jr. holds two doctorates in science and is an advisor to the Cuban government

Castro, 64, has a background in nuclear physics, having studied in the former Soviet Union at Moscow’s Kurchatov Institute of Atomic Energy. He holds two doctorates in science and is scientific advisor to the Cuban government.

Castro told his hosts that the Novosibirsk region is of great interest to Cuba in several areas, especially the development of biotechnologies and metallurgy.

Cuban ambassador to Russia Emilio Losada García with Castro Díaz-Balart.

This was his second visit to Novosibirsk since the mid-1980s, Castro told the press. At that time, “we toured Akademgorodok [the region’s scientific center] and met with physicists. I got a very good impression from the city and the people.

Bio- and nano-technology research and innovative projects

“Like last time, our greatest interest today is Akademgorodok, with its bio- and nano-technology research and innovative projects. We are also interested in the training and exchange of researchers.

“In a new phase, we intend to expand cooperation in science, industry and business. Your background and experience constitute a good basis for the establishment of joint projects.”

Several decisions were made at the meetings, among them

— an exchange of specialists in crude oil extraction and refining;

— a study by the Novosibirsk health authorities of the advances in medicine developed in Cuba, and greater cooperation between Havana and Novosibirsk in the field of health care;

— the presence of a Novosibirsk delegation at the Havana International Fair in November;

— Cuba’s participation in the international expositions held in Novosibirsk;

— increased tourism from the Russian city to the Caribbean island, and expanded cultural and educational exchanges;

— greater cooperation in all fields of endeavor, an effort that Ambassador Losada called “a priority.”

Mayor Lokot said that he would be happy to designate Novosibirsk as a sister city of Havana. Alluding to the recent contacts between Cuba and the United States, he pointed out that Minneapolis and St. Paul have been Novosibirsk’s sister cities since 1989.

Source: Fidel Jr. seeks closer ties with major Russian city progresoweekly