Hugo Chavez’s Memory Lives on in the Hearts of Latin Americans

Source:  TeleSUR
March 5 2019

hugo chavez lives onHugo Chavez’s presidency in Venezuela extended from 1999 to 2013, but his
presence still remains in the streets and the heart of the country. | Photo: EFE

Hugo Chavez’s presidency in Venezuela extended from 1999 to 2013,
but his presence still remains in the streets and the heart of the country. | Photo: EFE

Published 5 March 2019 (13 hours 5 minutes ago)

Chavez’s spirit was contagious and empowered the region with a passion for Latin America and its colorful history.

Six years since his passing and the memory of Hugo Chavez still remains not only in the hearts of Venezuelans but of Latin Americans around the globe.

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His leadership and legacy revolutionized the state of Venezuela, like no other administration in the nation’s history, cutting the chord from imperialist countries in the north, taking the reins and changing South America’s future.

After centuries of passivity, under Chavez’s administration, Venezuela bloomed into one of the strongest, most independent nations on the continent.

Over the 14 years of his presidency, Chavez made it his mission to bring equality to lower classes from mediating race discrimination to increasing employment opportunities and introducing social programs.

By exploring the expenditure of Venezuela’s oil industry, the former president was able to allocate funds for free housing, literacy, and health care initiatives. Pensions for the elderly surged, jumping from 400,000 to over two million; some 1.5 million Venezuelans benefited from the Mission Robinson I and learned to read and write.

Under Chavez’s policies, poverty rates were cut in half and the level of extreme poverty decreased by two-thirds; child malnutrition decreased and the amount of safe, clean drinking water grew.

In an article published by the Council on Hemispheric Affairs, Roger D. Harris, Task Force on the Americas, said, “Venezuela went from being among one of the most economically unequal nations in Latin America to being among the most equal through the exercise of state power for the populace.”

Chavez’s spirit was contagious and empowered the region with a passion for Latin America and its colorful history.

His experience was pivotal in the creation of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA) which united Venezuelan and Cuba in 2003 in a mutually respectful and reciprocal fair trade arrangement. What started as a two-member agreement, soon grew into an 11-member nation concord.

IN DEPTH:  Venezuela Confronts US-backed Right-wing Coup

A second initiative, PetroCaribe, made waves in 2005 when 17 countries from Latin America and the Caribbean joined together to secure a steady energy supply, without overdue interference from Canada or the United States.

Similarly, The Union of South American Nations (Unasur) and Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Celac) were created again as a means to break from centuries of tradition and submission orchestrated by the Northern Hemisphere.

The progress realized in Venezuela over the last decade and a half hardly make it surprising that the United States is desperate to instate a Washington-approved head of state.

Over the last few months, the U.S. has increased its efforts to dislodge Chavez’s democratically elected successor, Nicolas Maduro. In its most recent attempt, the U.S. sent “humanitarian aid” to Colombia in a show of solidarity with the Venezuelan opposition and the “suffering boys and girls.” However, violence- perpetrated by opposition forces- broke out along the border and resulted in the injury of numerous state police officials.

This “philanthropic” ploy was denounced by Venezuelan government officials before an international delegation at the United Nations last week, when Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza revealed that the trucks of “food” were carrying equipment for barricades and anti-government movements lodged by the opposition.

Despite these hardships, Maduro’s government continues Chavez’s mission, founding new social programs to boost the economy and employment opportunities, while still ensuring the heart and spirit of “Chavismo” is reflected in modern-day Venezuela.

Why Is Venezuela a Key Geopolitical Target for The US?

Source:  TeleSUR
January 25 2019

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro denounced that the real objective of the United States behind imposing a new government in the South American nation is to appropriate the energy and mineral resources of this country.

Why Is Venezuela a Key Geopolitical Target for The US?

“They have the ambition for oil, gas and gold. We tell them: these riches are not yours, they are for the people of Venezuela and that’s how it will be forever,” Nicolas Maduro warned on Wednesday, Jan. 23, in the Venezuelan capital Caracas shortly after opposition lawmaker Juan Guaido illegally declared himself “interim president” and received support for his unconstitutional move from the U.S., Canada and other right-wing governments in the region.

RELATED:  Latin American Right-Wing Offensive: Interview With Axel Kicillof

A deeper look into the reasons behind such right-wing flood to support the parliamentary coup reveals that the objective behind such endorsement of an internationally illegal act is behind the publicly stated humanitarian reasons and in fact about robbing the country of its riches after two decades of progressive and sovereign policies by the Bolivarian government that limited Washington’s access to such resources.

Oil

According to the CIA World Factbook, as of Jan. 1, 2017, Venezuela had the largest proven oil reserve estimate of any country, including Saudi Arabia.

As of November 2017, the South American nation had 300,900,000,000 barrels of proven reserves in the “Hugo Chávez” Orinoco Oil Belt. After the inauguration of Nicolas Maduro for a second term, Donald Trump government began to consider expanding its sanctions on Venezuelan crude to add pressure against the constitutional president.

Oil analysts have indicated that the objective, beyond preventing the sale of oil to China, is to ensure a stable source of oil to serve the U.S. market that is increasing and that its own current production can not supply. On Jan. 16, the U.S. Department of Energy revealed that its reserves decreased by 2.7 million barrels, reaching 437.1 million.

In terms of proven gas reserves, Venezuela had 198.3 trillion cubic feet in 2017, according to the Ministry of Petroleum. The new proven reserves are distributed in 2.3 trillion cubic feet of the traditional areas of Maracaibo, Maturin, Barcelona, Cumana and Barinas, and 718.7 trillion that lie in the blocks of the Oil Belt.

Mining resources

Venezuela has denounced the international campaign promoted by the United States against the Mining Arc where the reserves of gold, diamonds and other minerals such as coltan are concentrated.

The campaign against the Mining Arc has sought to increase the levels of economic suffocation in Venezuela by presenting Venezuelan gold as a product of trafficking and corruption.

In 2018 Venezuela advanced in the certification of more than 30 gold fields in the country, with which it aimed to establish itself “as the second largest gold reserve on the planet”.

During  2018 and despite the sanctions, the South American nation received a 200 percent increase in its non-oil exports compared to 2017, mainly gold sold to Holland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United States, the United Kingdom and especially to Turkey. In the first months of 2018, Venezuela exported 23.62 tons of gold to the Eurasian nation, valued at US$900 million.

By representing an alternative to oil and one of the largest proven gold reserves in the world, the U.S. has renewed its interest in appropriating this mineral and obstructing the commercial exchange that Venezuela maintains with Russia and Turkey in the Mining Arc.

As President Nicolas Maduro denounced Wednesday, Washington’s real objective in Venezuela is to seize the immense natural and mineral resources of the South American nation.

Political Beacon in Latin America

In 1998, commander Hugo Chavez Frias had a pivotal electoral triumph that changed the fate of Latin America for around 20 years, from that time to this date, there have been up to 15 progressive democratically elected governments in the region.

Commander Chavez and Nicolas Maduro first as foreign affairs minister and then as president have been crucial in the integrationist efforts in Latin American, guided by the ideals of Simon Bolivar of a united continent. With the cooperation of other countries and presidents such as Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, Dilma Rousseff, Rafael Correa, Evo Morales, Nestor Kirchner, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, Manuel Zelaya, Fernando Lugo, Daniel Ortega, Fidel Castro, Raul Castro, Venezuela pushed forward for the regional integration of the continent.

RELATED:  The Case for the Legitimacy of Maduro’s Second Term

During these years some bodies of regional integration bodies were created such as the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA), The Union of South American Nation (UNASUR), The Bank of the South, the News Network teleSUR, and the Southern Common Market to enforce South American trade bloc (MERCOSUR), all organizations that sought to create a more unified and independent Latin American and the Caribbean community.

From that moment a series of efforts began, in order to destabilize these governments. Soft coups against progressive presidents started, the first one against Chavez in 2002 which failed, then another against Honduras’ Manuel Zelaya in 2010, followed by a parliamentary maneuver against Paraguay’s Fernando Lugo, and partially ending with a parliamentary coup against Brazil’s Dilma Rousseff in 2016.

These processes have been defined as “lawfare”, such as the current legal wrangling against Lula, to which we can add the more recent ones against Rafael Correa and Jorge Glas in Ecuador and a very similar process against Cristina Kirshner in Argentina.

The domino effect rising of right-wing governments in Latin America, and defeating the “National Popular governments” continues in the region, and Venezuela is one of the last standing defenses, along with Bolivia, Nicaragua, Cuba, and El Salvador.

This is why a destabilization mediatic and a political and economic campaign has been unleashed against Venezuela, and all the “National Popular governments” of Latin America, for years. Defeating Venezuela, one of the first progressive countries and governments in the region, is so important for the U.S. and the local right-wing oligarchies. It would be a defeat to progressivism in the region.

Cuba-China relations: A cooperation model based on equality, respect, and mutual benefit

Source: Granma
October 2 2017

by Iramsy Peraza Forte | informacion@granma.cu

Miguel Ángel Ramírez, Cuban ambassador in Beijing, agreed to speak with Granma International about the current state of Cuba-China relations and their future prospects

cuba china relations oct 2017.jpgThere exists great potential to develop economic and political ties between Cuba and China. Photo: Ismael Batista

Beijing.- Cuba and China have enjoyed a special relationship since diplomatic relations between the two countries were established on September 28, 1960.
che y mao.jpgMonths before these ties were officially recognized, Comandante Ernesto Che Guevara led a delegation representing the nascent Cuban Revolution to Beijing, with the aim of cementing relations with the People’s Republic of China, founded 11 years prior.
Today, 57 years later, Cuba and China are celebrating having built a relationship which is not only an example for the world, but also a reference for the development of fraternal ties between two parties, governments, and peoples, which have stood the test of time.

Miguel Ángel Ramírez, Cuban ambassador in Beijing, agreed to speak with Granma Internationalabout the current state of Cuba-China relations and their future prospects.
This year is the 57th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the Republic of Cuba and People’s Republic of China. More than half a century later how would you describe the current state of these ties, and the over 50-year relationship between the two countries?

fidel 200.jpgThe precursor to the emergence of these ties between Cuba and China is one of the most important moments of our history when, during the First Declaration of Havana on September 2, 1960, over one million Cubans, representing our people and led by leader of the Cuban Revolution Comandante en Jefe Fidel Castro Ruz, decided to recognize the People’s Republic of China.

Thus, Cuba became the first country in the western hemisphere to recognize the new China, even while the illegitimate government of Taiwan continued to hold its place in the United Nations. Since then, we have maintained ties of friendship, fraternity, and mutual support, which have strengthened over time.

The close ties of friendship between the two governments, parties, and peoples have a solid historical base, dating back to our independence struggles, in which Chinese immigrants played an important part; while the 170th anniversary of their arrival to the country is being celebrated this year. This important date, which laid the foundations for the creation of a Chinese-Cuban community, and the full integration of Chinese immigrants into our society to become part of our national identity, has been commemorated in both countries.

A model of cooperation

Our relations represent a model of cooperation based on equality, respect, and mutual benefit between two socialist, independent, economically strong nations.
Cuba has always shown its unequivocal support for the One China policy, and strongly rejects any actions which threaten its sovereignty and territorial integrity. The Chinese government and people have also continued to support the Cuban Revolution, and in particular its struggle against the U.S. blockade, a policy which despite continual, broad international rejection, remains intact and continues to escalate as seen by the continual persecution of Cuba’s financial transactions abroad.

Over recent years, more than 3,000 Chinese students have come to study in Cuba through government scholarship programs, which give new generations from the country’s least developed provinces the opportunity to study Spanish, medicine, tourism, and education, among other degrees, on the island. Meanwhile, the number of self-financing students from that country wanting to earn a degree here has also risen, proof of the popularity and quality of Cuba’s educational system among Chinese youth.

How can economic exchanges be expanded between the two countries?
China became Cuba’s top trading partner for the first time in 2016, with exchanges between the two nations amounting to 2,585, 516,000 USD.
Chinese companies are present in almost all sectors of the island’s economy, via projects linked to foreign trade, through which our country obtains various types of equipment, consumer goods, or through direct Chinese investment in the country.

We have seen important achievements in promoting Chinese Direct Foreign Investment in Cuba with projects such as the Bello Monte initiative linked to golf-course real estate, in which Beijing has invested 500 million USD.

We are also working on various Chinese investment projects in the Mariel Special Development Zone as well as others in practically all spheres of our country’s social and economic life, meaning a substantial boost for commercial exchange.
Cuba is also in the process of transforming its energy matrix, for which substantial long-term investments are needed, and that goes for both wind, solar, and bio energy, areas in which the world’s second largest economic power should play a key role.
In fact, construction has already begun on what will be the country’s largest bioelectric plant, a joint venture featuring technology and financing from China, as well as Cuba and the UK.

The success and level of development achieved by various Cuban-Chinese ventures, is proof of what we can achieve through tenacity, motivation, and revolutionary spirit. As such, I would like to highlight the Shanghai-Suncuba company, owner of the Grand Kempinski-Shanghai and the three largest joint ventures in the biotechnology sector, based in different locations across the island: an expression of the strength and recognition achieved by this sector, founded by our Comandante en Jefe, and an example of the strategic direction being taken by the country.

Based on their individual realties, China and Cuba – two countries in the process of building socialism – share a similar outlook on many issues. What experiences can the two nations share in this process?
Cuba and China have both expressed their commitment to continue constructing socialism in accordance with each nation’s particular characteristics and under the leadership of their respective Communist Parties. We consider ourselves to be mutual references in the construction of socialism deriving from our own unique characteristics, on the basis of which we conduct a broad and systematic exchange of experiences.
The country is immersed in updating its socio-economic model, a process which, under the leadership of the Communist Party, establishes the bases for medium and long-term national development, to achieve sustainable, prosperous socialism in accordance with our reality. China’s experience in its “reforming and opening up” process has been an important reference in this phase, defined by a continual analysis of the achievements, mistakes, and particularities of each country.

As the world’s second largest economic power China is actively working to contribute to global economic stability, combat climate change and build a new type of international relations. How would you describe China’s efforts in this regard?

China is without a doubt a stabilizing factor in many aspects of the global scenario. As an emerging power, it has been leading efforts to promote peaceful global development. Its rise as a key player in an increasingly globalized world, has also seen it become a protagonist in defending the rights of Third World countries, with the G-77+China representing the most compelling example of cooperation between equals.
It has made a transcendental contribution in terms of poverty reduction, food production, the transfer of technology, and successful launching of satellites into space, among others areas.

More recently, the country’s 21st century One Belt One Road initiative and the launch of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) represent a vote of confidence in the creation of a new international system.

The expansion and strengthening of its ties with Latin America and the Caribbean represent another example of balance and stability for the region. These ties have the potential to produce great benefits for all involved, especially looking toward the upcoming Second China-Celac Ministerial Forum, set to be held early next year in our region.

CNC’s Cuba Hurricane Relief Campaign Off to a Good Start

Canadian Network on Cuba
Working in friendship and solidarity with Cuba

 209 Oakwood Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, M6E 2V3
cncexec@canadiannetworkoncuba.ca   www.canadiannetworkoncuba.ca

September 30, 2017

TO: CNC groups and friends
FROM: Keith Ellis, Coordinator
2017 CNC Hurricane Relief

RE: 2017 Canadian Network on Cuba Hurricane Relief Campaign

hurricane relief for cuba 2.jpgOur campaign is off to a good start thanks to a spirit in which suggestions and initiatives are being taken in an organized way that keeps reminding us of one of Fidel’s frequently repeated dictums: “cada soldado un comandante” (every soldier a commander).  This spirit was abundantly evident in a very successful event held last Friday, September 22, in Toronto by the end of which, combined with other events, and including donations received from other parts of the country, we can say that we have so far collected $35,000.

We fully expect that this spirit will continue to be manifested here and throughout Canada, as we try to help the admirably courageous Cuban people who themselves are so deeply and intelligently involved in this recuperative effort against the terrible effects of Hurricane Irma.

You will be pleased to know that Venezuela was prompt in beginning to provide its substantial aid to Cuba.  President Maduro himself arrived in Havana with one of the first shipments on September 21.  Also, very promptly too, Venezuela and Cuba have announced their plans to aid Puerto Rico.  Venezuela has proposed a “special plan of support and solidarity.”  Cuba has 39 doctors ready to go to help its historically sister island (the phrase “dos alas del mismo pájaro” [two wings of the same bird] was first applied to Cuba and Puerto Rico when they were both struggling against colonialism).

For us, as simple human beings, not corrupted or dehumanized by the big media, this response by Cuba and Venezuela will seem to be commendable and inspiring.  But don’t be surprised if it further incites the punitive anger of our Minister of External Affairs, Chrystia Freeland.  She knows that the plan of the moneyed vultures, some of them well-placed in the Trump administration, is to take advantage of Puerto Rico’s heightened crisis, to squeeze the “associate state” to the point of asphyxiation, so that it will offer privatization of its publicly-owned assets at give-away prices as the only exit from the crisis.  The Puerto Rican people will thus become enslaved to the new owners for use of erstwhile public utilities.  A part of Hillary Clinton’s family benefited in just this way from the very tardy response to the horrendous Haiti earthquake of 2010.

You will remember how prompt Cuba and Venezuela were in their response to that great tragedy, when within the first twenty-four hours some 1100 medical interventions were carried out by the Cuban medical team that happened to be in Haiti on a different humanitarian mission.

Alas, a similar rapidity of response cannot be achieved in the case of Puerto Rico.  It is U.S. territory; and permission, as in the case of Hurricane Katrina, will have to be obtained from that country’s government in order for Cuba and Venezuela to carry out their humanitarian activities there.  Permission was denied in the case of Katrina, at the expense of many lives.  We hope that when President Trump gets there, as he is scheduled to do on Tuesday, the 3rd of October, he will make a just assessment of the people’s needs and allow appropriate interventions.

During his slow, apparently reluctant, journey to the nearby island, he is taking every opportunity to remind his 3.5 million unfortunate compatriots there that they have a pre-hurricane debt of 70 billion dollars to New York banks that must be paid.

An interesting proposal aired by President Maduro is to work toward making Puerto Rico eligible for membership in CELAC (the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States).

Let us remember always, as we raise funds for Cuba, that our efforts are never ever linked to swindlers’ pipe-dreams, to frauds, of the kinds that may well be hoodwinking our Minister of External Affairs, but to short-term and long-term help to and solidarity with the Cuban people and their government.

Cheques should be written to “CNC,” with the following words on the memo line. – “Hurricane Relief”.   They should be mailed:

c/o Sharon Skup
56 Riverwood Terrace
Bolton ON L7E 1S4

Un abrazo,

Keith Ellis, Coordinator
2017 CNC Hurricane Relief Campaign

Cuba will never accept any preconditions or impositions

Source:  Granma,  | internet@granma.cu
September 22, 2017 16:09:30

Speech by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Cuba, Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla, during the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly

Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla

 

Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla sept 2017.jpg

STATEMENT BY H.E. Mr. BRUNO RODRÍGUEZ PARRILLA, MINISTER OF

FOREIGN AFFAIRS OF THE REPUBLIC OF CUBA, AT THE SEVENTY SECOND SESSION OF THE UNITED NATIONS GENERAL ASSEMBLY. NEW YORK, SEPTEMBER 22, 2017.

Mr. President:

Mr. Secretary General;

Allow me to reiterate to you Cuba’s, support to your work at the helm of the United Nations and as a guarantor and advocate of international peace.

Heads of State and Government;

Distinguished delegates;

I would like to express my deep condolences to the relatives of the deceased and the victims of hurricanes Irma and Maria, as well as our disposition to increase our cooperation, to the extent of our modest possibilities, with the brother peoples and governments of Dominica and Antigua and Barbuda, small Caribbean islands which suffered a terrible devastation; with the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Saint Martin, Sint Maarten, Virgin Islands and Anguilla.

I call upon the international community to give the highest priority to this situation and mobilize resources to assist the small Caribbean Island States and territories which have suffered such devastation.

We would like to convey Cuba’s warmest feelings of solidarity to the government and people of Mexico, particularly to the victims and their relatives, who were affected by both earthquakes, and reiterate to them our disposition to assist the population and support the recovery works with our modest efforts.

We also want to express our sorrow to the U.S. people, as well as our heartfelt condolences to the relatives of the deceased and to all of the victims of hurricane Irma.

Mr. President:

I want to convey the testimony of the people of Cuba, who are currently carrying out a colossal effort to recover from the severe damages caused by hurricane Irma to housing, agriculture, the power system and other services. Despite the all encompassing preventive measures – which included the evacuation of more than 1.7 million persons- and the full cooperation of all citizens, we suffered the loss of ten persons.

Strengthening the unity and solidarity of our noble and heroic people

The painful damages to services as well as the loss of social and personal goods as well as the hardships endured by families that spent many hours without electricity or water, contributed to strengthen the unity and solidarity of our noble and heroic people.

The moving scenes of rescuers saving a girl and giving her back to her mother; of a little boy picking up a bust of Jose Marti from the rubble; of students helping families they had not met before; of soldiers from the Armed Forces and the Ministry of the Interior doing the toughest jobs; of local leaders heading the most difficult tasks have become all too familiar.

During a visit paid to the area that suffered the most severe devastation. President Raúl Castro issued an appeal which literally read, and I quote: “These have been tough days for our people who, in only a few hours, have seen how what was built with great effort has been destroyed by a devastating hurricane. The images received during the last few hours are too eloquent, just as much as the spirit of resilience and victory of our people that are reborn in the face of every adversity.”

On behalf of the government and the people of Cuba, I sincerely appreciate the genuine expressions of solidarity and affection expressed by numerous governments, parliaments, international organizations and representatives of the civil society.

I would like to convey my profound gratitude for the numerous offers of assistance that we have received.

Mr. President:

I still keep vivid and emotional memories of the imposing presence of Fidel Castro Ruz, the Commander in Chief of the Cuban Revolution, and the great validity of the ideas he expressed before this Assembly.

On behalf of our people and government, I would like to express our gratitude for the feelings of respect, affection and admiration we have received from all latitudes.

Mr. President:

Inequality, poverty and hunger

On Tuesday last, President Donald Trump came here to convince us that one of his purposes is to promote the prosperity of nations and persons. But, in the real world, the wealth owned by eight men altogether is equivalent to the wealth shared by 3.6 billion human beings, who make up the poorest half of humanity.

In terms of turnover, 69 of the 100 biggest entities of the world are transnationals, not States. The turnover of the world’s ten biggest corporations is higher than the public revenues earned by 180 countries combined.

Seven hundred million persons live in extreme poverty; 21 million are victims of forced labor. In 2015, 5.9 million children died of preventable or curable diseases before reaching the age of 5. A total of 758 million adults are illiterate.

Eight hundred and fifteen million persons suffer from chronic hunger -tens of millions more than in 2015. Two billion are undernourished. Even if the precarious decreasing growth rate of recent years rebounds, 653 million persons will continue to face hunger by the year 2030, and this will not be enough to eradicate hunger by the year 2050.

There are 22.5 million refugees. Humanitarian tragedies associated to migrants flows worsen and increase amidst a clearly unjust international economic and political order.

Cruel and ineffective 

The construction of walls and barriers as well as the laws and measures adopted to prevent the waves of refugees and migrants have proved to be cruel and ineffective. There is a proliferation of exclusive and xenophobic policies that violate the human rights of millions of persons and fail to solve the problems of underdevelopment, poverty and armed conflicts, which are the main causes of migration and refugee claims.

Military expenditures have increased to 1.7 trillion dollars. That reality belies those who claim that there are not enough resources to eradicate poverty.

However, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development lacks the means for its implementation, due to the egoism and lack of political will of the United States and other industrialized countries.

What is the miraculous recipe that President Donald Trump recommends to us in the absence of the financial flows of the Marshall Plan? Who will contribute the resources for that? How can this be reconciled with the “America First” idea advanced by Presidents Reagan and Trump?

President Trump ignores and distorts history and portraits a chimera as a goal to be pursued. The production and consumption patterns proper of neoliberal capitalism are unsustainable and irrational and will inexorably lead to the destruction of the environment and the end of the human species.

Can anyone forget about the consequences of colonialism, slavery, neocolonialism and imperialism?

A new inclusive international economic order

Could the several decades of bloody military dictatorships in Latin America be referred to as an example of a successful capitalism? Does anyone know of any recipe of neoliberal capitalism that has been better applied than those which destroyed the Latin American economies in the 1980s?

It is both indispensable and urgent for the United Nations to work in order to establish a new participatory, democratic, equitable and inclusive international economic order, as well as a new financial architecture that take into account the needs and peculiarities of developing countries and the asymmetries that exist in world trade and finances as a result of centuries of exploitation and plundering.

Industrialized countries have the moral duty, the historical responsibility as well as sufficient financial and technological means for that.

Climate change

Not even the rich will enjoy the announced prosperity if climate change is not stopped.

Cuba regrets the decision taken by the government of the United States, which has been historically the principal greenhouse gas emitting government in the planet, to withdraw its country from the Paris Agreement.

In 2016, and for the third consecutive year, the average global temperature increase records have been broken, which confirms that climate change is a threat to the survival of humanity and the sustainable development of our peoples.

We reiterate our solidarity with the Small Island Developing States, particularly from the Caribbean and the Pacific, which are the most affected by climate change and for which we claim a just, special and differentiated treatment.

Nuclear weapons

Mr. President:

The U.S. government has come here to tell us that, in addition to prosperity, the other two “beautiful pillars” of international order are sovereignty and security.

We all share the common responsibility to preserve the existence of human beings in the face of a nuclear threat. An important contribution to the achievement of that goal was the historical adoption of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons under the auspices of the United Nations, which proscribe the use and the threat of use of those weapons that have the capacity to annihilate the human species.

Obviously, the United States strongly opposed this treaty. It announced that it will invest 700 billion dollars in military expenditures and is developing an extremely aggressive nuclear and military doctrine based on the threat to use and the use of force.

NATO member States attempt against international peace and security and International Law by promoting military interventions and non-conventional wars against sovereign States.

As was pointed out by the Commander in Chief of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro Ruz: “Let the philosophy of plunder disappear and the philosophy of war will also disappear!”

Manipulating the concepts of sovereignty and security

The illegal imposition of unilateral coercive measures and the use of financial, legal, cultural and communication instruments to destabilize governments as well as the denial of peoples’ right to self-determination have become customary.

The covert use of ICTs to attack other States increases, while several developed countries strongly oppose the adoption of international treaties that would regulate cooperation in order to achieve a safe cyberspace.

The U.S. President manipulates the concepts of sovereignty and security to his exclusive benefit and to the detriment of all others, including his allies.

The attempt to resort to military threats and force to stop the irreversible world trend to multi-polarization and polycentrism will seriously jeopardize international peace and security, which should be defended and preserved through international mobilization.

The principles of sovereign equality, respect for the territorial integrity and non interference in the internal affairs of States should be observed. The UN Charter and International Law admit no re-interpretation.

The United Nations reform should pursue the principal goal of responding to the pressing needs of peoples and the great disadvantaged majorities. Multilateralism should be protected and reinforced in the face of the imperialist interests of domination and hegemony.

The democratization of the Security Council, both in terms of its composition and its working methods, is a most urgent task.

The strengthening of the General Assembly and the recovery of the functions that have been usurped from it are indispensable.

An exceptionalist and supremacist vision

Mr. President:

The “patriotism” invoked in the U.S. statement is a perversion of humanism, the love and loyalty to the homeland and of the enrichment and defense of national and universal culture. It embodies an exceptionalist and supremacist vision of ignorant intolerance in the face of diverse political, economic, social and cultural models.

In developed countries, the loss of legitimacy of political systems and parties worsens and electoral abstentionism is on the rise. Corruption, whether legal or illegal, has turned into metastasis. So is the extreme case of the so called “special interests” or corporate payments in exchange for benefits in the country that spends the highest amount of money in electoral campaigns and where, paradoxically, a candidate with the lowest number of popular votes can be elected or entitled to govern with a negligible support by voters.

There has been and increasing and unheard-of use of science and technology to exercise hegemony, mutilate national cultures and manipulate human behavior, as is the case of the so called “big data” or psychometry, used for political and advertising purposes. Seven consortia keep a strict control of whatever is read, watched or heard in the planet. Technologies are being monopolized. The governance of digital networks is dictatorial and discriminatory and, despite appearances, the digital divide between rich and poor countries is increasing.

The opportunities and rights of youths, migrants and workers are curtailed and their human rights are openly and systematically violated.

Pattern of systematic violations of human rights

The day before yesterday, the U.S. Vice-president, Michael Pence, ridiculously ignoring the functions of the Security Council and attempting to establish new prerogatives, said that this organ should modify the composition and methods of the UN Human Rights Council, which “doesn’t deserve its name” because “a clear majority of the Human Rights Council members fail to meet even the most basic human rights standards”. I suppose he is not including, in this case, his own country, which will in fact deserve to be included because of its pattern of systematic violations of human rights, namely the use of torture, arbitrary detentions and imprisonment -as occurs at the Guantanamo Naval Base-, the assassination of African Americans by law enforcement agents, the killing of innocent civilians perpetrated by its troops and the xenophobia and repression against immigrants -including minors- as well as its scarce adherence to international instruments.

Mr. President:

We reaffirm our strongest condemnation against all forms and manifestations of terrorism and reject the double standards in combating them.

The urgent search for a just and lasting solution to the conflict in the Middle East is based on the exercise of the inalienable right of the Palestinian people to self-determination and the existence of a free and independent State within the pre-1967 borders, with Eastern Jerusalem as its capital.

The situation in Western Sahara requires an effort in conformity with the UN resolutions to guarantee the Saharan people’s exercise to self-determination and respect for their legitimate right to live in peace in their own territory.

Cuba reaffirms its support to the search for a peaceful and negotiated solution to the war in Syria without any foreign interference and with full respect for its sovereignty and territorial integrity.

The threats to international peace and security resulting from the expansion of NATO’s presence along the Russian borders are on the increase. We continue to reject the unilateral and unjust sanctions imposed against that country.

We demand respect for the so called Nuclear Agreement signed with the Islamic Republic of Iran.

War is not an option

We reject the threat to totally destroy the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, the home to 25 million human beings. War is not an option in the Korean peninsula; it would threaten the existence of hundreds of millions of persons in this area as well as in neighboring countries; it would lead to a nuclear war of unpredictable consequences. Only through dialogue and negotiation would it be possible to achieve a lasting political solution that should take into account the legitimate concerns of all the parties involved. We support the total denuclearization of the Korean peninsula, without any foreign interference, with absolute respect for sovereign equality and territorial integrity of States and strictly abiding by the principle of not using or threatening to use force.

Threats to Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace

Mr. President:

New threats are hovering over peace and stability in Latin America and the Caribbean, in open disrespect for the “Proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace” signed in Havana by the Heads of State and Government of our region in January, 2014, on the occasion of the Second Summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC).

We reiterate what was expressed by President Raul Castro Ruz about the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela on July 14 last:

“The aggression and putschist violence against Venezuela harms all of Our America and only serve the interests of those set on dividing us to exercise their control over our peoples, unconcerned about causing conflicts of incalculable consequences in this region, like those we are seeing in different parts of the world.

The Bolivarian and Chavista Revolution

“Today we warn that those attempting to overthrow the Bolivarian and Chavista Revolution through unconstitutional, violent and putschist methods will shoulder a serious responsibility before history.

We strongly reject the military threats against Venezuela, the Executive Order that designates it as a threat to the national security of the United States and the unilateral, unjust and arbitrary sanctions applied against it.

We reiterate our unwavering solidarity with the Bolivarian and Chavista government and people and its civic-military union led by the constitutional President Nicolas Maduro Moros.

We denounce and condemn the NICA Act Initiative, promoted in the U.S. Congress as part of an interventionist behavior which is intended to impose an economic blockade against the people and the government of Nicaragua, to whom we reiterate our support.

We express our solidarity with former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, victim of a political persecution intended to prevent him from running for direct elections by means of a judicial disqualification. Lula, President Dilma Rousseff, the Workers*

Party and the Brazilian people will always find Cuba on their side.

We reiterate our historical commitment with the free determination and independence of the Puerto Rican people.

We support the legitimate claim of Argentina for the sovereignty over the Malvinas, South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands.

Cuba will continue to contribute, to the extent possible, and at the request of the parties involved, its efforts to achieve a stable and lasting peace in Colombia.

We will uphold our commitment to share our modest achievements with the peoples of the South, including the efforts of the 41 652 cooperation workers deployed in 63 countries to struggle for the life and health of human beings.

A setback in U.S.-Cuba bilateral relations

Mr. President:

On June 16 last, the president of the United States, Donald Trump, announced the new Cuba policy of his administration, which is a setback in U.S.-Cuba bilateral relations and undermines the bases established two years ago to advance towards a new type of relation between our countries, characterized by respect and equality.

The U.S. Government has decided to tighten the economic, commercial and financial blockade by imposing new obstacles to the already limited possibilities its business community had to trade with and invest in Cuba as well as additional restrictions on U.S. citizens willing to travel to our country.

Those decisions ignore the support from broad sectors in the U.S., including the majority of Cuban émigrés, to the lifting of the blockade and the normalization of relations. They only serve the interests of a group of Cuban origin, based in South Florida, which is an ever more isolated and minoritarian group that insists in harming Cuba and its people for having decided to defend, at all costs, the right to be free, independent and sovereign. Today we reiterate our condemnation of the measures aimed at tightening the blockade and reaffirm that any strategy intended to destroy the Revolution will fail.

Likewise, we reject the manipulation of the human rights issue against Cuba, which has a lot to be proud of and has no need to receive lessons from the United States or anyone.

This time we would like to express our strongest condemnation of the disrespectful, offensive and interventionist statement against Cuba and the Cuban government, made three days ago at this rostrum by President Donald Trump. We remind him that the United States, where flagrant human rights violations are committed, which raise deep concern among the international community, has no moral authority to judge my country. We reaffirm that Cuba will never accept any preconditions or impositions, nor will it ever renounce any of its principles.

Regarding the alleged incidents that would have affected U.S. diplomatic officials in Havana we categorically affirm that the Cuban government rigorously and seriously abides by its obligations under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations in relation to the protection and the integrity of all diplomats without any exception, including those from the United States. Cuba has never perpetrated nor will it ever perpetrate actions of this sort. Cuba has never allowed nor will it ever allow its territory to be used by third parties with that purpose.

The Cuban authorities, based on the preliminary results of the priority investigation that is being carried out with a high technical component, following instructions from the top level of our government, has taken into account the data contributed by the U.S. authorities and so far has found no evidence whatsoever that could confirm the causes or the origin of the health disorders referred to by U.S. diplomats and their relatives. The investigation to clarify this issue continues, and in order to be able to arrive to a conclusion, it will be crucial to count on the cooperation of the U.S. authorities. It would be unfortunate if a matter of this nature is politicized.

As was expressed by the Cuban President Raul Castro Ruz, Cuba is willing to continue negotiating all pending bilateral issues with the United States, on the basis of equality and absolute respect for the sovereignty and independence of our country; and maintaining a respectful dialogue and cooperation in areas of common interest with the U.S. government.

Cuba and the United States can cooperate and coexist, respecting their differences and promoting everything that benefits both countries and peoples, but no one should expect Cuba to make concessions that affect its sovereignty and independence.

The lifting and total elimination of the blockade

Mr. President:

The Cuban people will not cease in their legitimate claim for the lifting and total elimination of the economic, commercial and financial blockade and will continue to denounce the strengthening of that policy. On November Cuba will once again present to the United Nations General Assembly the draft Resolution entitled

“Necessity of ending the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the United States of America against Cuba.” While inequality, the opulence of a few and the marginalization of many are growing in today’s world, the Cuban people will keep up its struggle to achieve the most just society possible. We will continue to steadily advance down the path of revolutionary transformations that has been sovereignly chosen by all Cubans to further improve our socialism.

Thank you, very much.

 

WFDY: Solidarity statement with the Bolivarian revolution of Venezuela

Source:  WFDY
August 26 2017

WFDY logo 1.jpgThe World Federation of Democratic Youths condemns the threat and declarations of military aggression against Venezuela, expressed recently by the president of the USA, Donald Trump.

Likewise WFDT rejects the measures taken against Venezuela by several Latin-American governments which have aligned themselves totally with the imperialistic North American strategy that aims to overthrow the Bolivarian Revolution.

We defend the principles of respect for sovereignty and the right to self-determination of all peoples and condemn the policy of imperialistic wars that demonstrates their  opposition to the Proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a zone of peace, approved by the CELAC in 2014.

Long live Bolivarian Revolution!!!

No to the Imperialistic War!!!

Long live the peace!!!

WFDY HQ
Budapest,
August, 2017

wfdy facebook.jpg

Six CELAC Medals at the 2017 World Athletic Championships after day 4

August 7 2017

Source:  IAAF medal table

At the end of day 4, CELAC countries have earned 6 of the 46 medals won by 26 countries.

Jamaica and Venezuela each have two medals, a gold and a silver, while Cuba and Colombia have a bronze and a silver respectively.

This places Jamaica and Venezuela as joint 5th position holders on the medal table while Kenya (5), Ethiopia (3) and South Africa (3) rank 2nd, 3rd and 4th respectively.

The CELAC medal winners are:

Jamaica: 

usain bolt wins bronze at wac 2017c

Usain Bolt, bronze 100m

omar mcleod wins 5

Jamaica’s Omar McLeod added the world 110 metres hurdles title to his Olympic crown in London on Monday.  McLeod, 23, led from start to finish to take the title in 13.04 seconds from defending champion Sergey Shubenkov with Balazs Baji of Hungary taking a surprise bronze.

Venezuela

yulimar rojas venezuela wins triple jump

Yulimar Rojas, gold, triple jump

Robeilys Peinado venezuela wins bronze at wac 2017 heptathlon

Robeilys Peinado, bronze (joint), pole vault

Source:  TeleSUR

The 19-year-old Peinado was the youngest athlete to compete in the competition. She was ecstatic at the historic win. 

Pole vaulter Robeilys Peinado became the first Venezuelan to win a bronze medal at the 2017 World Championships in London.

The 19-year-old Peinado was the youngest athlete to compete in the competition. She was ecstatic at the historic win.

“It’s very unexpected,” said Peinado. “When my coach (the Ukrainian Vyacheslav Kalinichenko) was calling me to give me the flag, I did not believe it. He would tell me, ‘I can not be third,’ until I saw him and saw him on the screen.” she told El Nuevo Herald.

“I will not be able to sleep tonight,” she added.

Peinado shared the bronze with Cuba’s Yarisley Silva, both with a record of 4.65 meters. Peinado’s vault equaled her national record, Reuters reported.

“At first I was uncomfortable because I’m not accustomed to sharing a mat with such athletes. But now I am included in that group,” Peinado said.

“I met Yarisley when I started my steps on the pole, and now I’m sharing the podium with her. What more can I ask for? ”

Twelve athletes made it to the final round. Peinado qualified in third place with a score of 4.56 meters, according to the World Athletics Federation.

Cuba

yarisley silva cuba pole vault 2

Yarisley Silva, bronze(joint), pole vault

Colombia

caterine ibarguen colombia silver medal wac 2017

Caterine Ibarguen, silver, triple jump