Raúl Castro: An increasingly prosperous, equitable, safe, sustainable and united Caribbean is possible

Source:  Cubadebate
December 8 2017

raul in antigua dec 2017.jpg

Speech by Army General Raúl Castro Ruz, President of the Councils of State and Ministers, at the Sixth Caricom-Cuba Summit. Antigua and Barbuda, December 8, 2017, “Year 59 of the Revolution.”

(Stenographic Versions – Council of State)

Honorable Gaston Browne, Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda;

Honorable Keith Mitchell, Prime Minister of Granada and President of the Conference of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community (Caricom);

Honorable Prime Ministers and Presidents of the other member countries of Caricom;

His Excellency Ambassador Irwin Larocque, Secretary General of Caricom;

His Excellency Mr. Didacus Jules, Director General of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States;

Her Excellency June Soomer, Secretary General of the Association of Caribbean States;

Distinguished Heads of Delegations, Ministers and Special Guests:

I wish to express to the people and authorities of Antigua and Barbuda sincere gratitude for the expressions of friendship we have received since we arrived in this country and convey the appreciation and gratitude of the Cuban people and government for the expressions of solidarity of the Caribbean brothers after the physical fidel 26disappearance of the Commander in Chief of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro Ruz, who was the initiator, guide and maximum promoter of political ties and cooperation between our countries.

Remember his words on December 8, 2002: “The only way out for our people is integration and cooperation, not only among States, but also among the various regional schemes and organizations.”
I am grateful for the determination of the Honorable Gaston Gaston Browne Antigua 2cBrowne and his government team, who despite the difficulties they face after the destructive passage of Hurricane Irma did not cease in their efforts to guarantee the conditions for the successful celebration of this, the Sixth Caricom-Cuba Summit .

A day like today, 45 years ago, the prime ministers of four countries of the Anglophone Caribbean, recently reached their independence, Errol Barrow, of Barbados; Forbes Burnham, of Guyana; Michael Manley, from Jamaica, and Eric Williams, from Trinidad and Tobago, decided to establish diplomatic relations with Cuba.

We will never forget that decision, which was a fundamental step for breaking the diplomatic and commercial siege against Cuba. It also allowed deepening the relations between the peoples of Our America, united by centuries of history, culture and neighborhood.

With pride we also celebrate the fifteenth anniversary of the Caricom-Cuba Summits, whose agreements and results have emanated a deeper and more effective relationship, based on solidarity and cooperation.

A sign of that everlasting friendship was the support that we offered each other before the passage of the two intense hurricanes that hit our region last September. I want to thank you for the expressions of brotherhood and Caribbean solidarity that we received.

A significant step

In this regard, the signing today of a Memorandum of Understanding for cooperation between the Civil Defense of Cuba and the Caribbean Agency for Disaster and Emergency Management is a significant step.

In the next triennium we foresee the continuity of joint projects, the result of the political will of our governments, such as the Regional School of Arts in Jamaica and the Center for the Stimulation of the Development of Children, Adolescents and Youth with Special Educational Needs, based in in Guyana, which have made progress in their implementation process.

We will continue to receive Caribbean students in our universities. The 5,432 young people from the Caribbean who have been trained and the 723 currently studying in them, as well as the 1,762 Cuban collaborators present in all the Caricom countries, including 1,469 in the health sector, are part of the contribution from Cuba to the development of the Caribbean peoples.

We intend to advance in the development of trade and investments. Between 2014 and 2016 the commercial exchange grew by 70%. This year marches at a good pace. The broad and diverse participation of Caribbean companies and agencies at the Havana Fair, last month, predicts higher growth.

We welcome the implementation, in January 2018, of the Second Protocol to the bilateral Trade and Cooperation Agreement, a document that expands the tariff preferences granted by Cuba and that facilitates access to our markets.

Dear Presidents and Prime Ministers and Guests:

How shall we face the challenge of moving towards development in the midst of the deep economic, social, political and environmental crisis that this hemisphere and the world are suffering? We must do it with unity in our diversity, integration and genuine cooperation among us.

The dangers for the survival of the human species increase. The consequences of the application of concepts not universally accepted as “humanitarian intervention” and “responsibility to protect” are used to cover up interventionist and aggressive actions that threaten international peace and security and call us to defend international law and the full validity of the purposes and principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations.

We should articulate to demand a fair action by the industrialized powers for the mitigation and adaptation of the effects of climate change, in particular with financial resources and technology transfer; to agree on approaches to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and, in particular, to collectively address the mechanisms of domination imposed on us by the unjust international financial system.

I reiterate Cuba’s invariable position of supporting, in all circumstances, the right of small island states and developing nations to receive special and differential treatment in access to trade and investment.

We support the demand, equally just, to receive cooperation according to their real situation and needs, and not on the basis of per capita income statistics that classify them as middle income countries and exclude them from the flows of financial resources indispensable for its development

We join our voice against the persecution by transnational financial capital centers that seek to damage the international reputation of the Caribbean countries and hinder their economic development through inclusion in spurious and unilateral lists and singularization in dangerous supranational endeavors, supposedly for the confrontation to corruption.

We strongly support the just demand of the Caribbean Community for compensation from the colonial powers for the horrors of slavery and trafficking.

We also have an urgent duty with our peoples to advance with increasingly solid steps towards the political, economic and social integration of Latin America and the Caribbean.

Regional integration

Today, the successful trajectory of Caricom, the participation of all its Member States and Cuba in the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States and the Association of Caribbean States, as well as the membership of some of us in the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America, have contributed to the advancement of regional integration, which we must continue to promote. On the other hand, participation in Petrocaribe has represented a guarantee and significant contribution to the development of our countries.

I would like to highlight the signature by the Heads of State and Government of the region of the Proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace, on the occasion of the II Summit of Celac, held in Havana in January 2014, which constitutes the basis for the development of relations of mutual respect between the States and the commitment of these with the strict fulfillment of their obligation not to intervene, directly or indirectly, in the internal affairs of any other State and to observe the principles of national sovereignty, equality of rights and self-determination of peoples.

Venezuela

That is why we must not allow the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, one of our Latin American and Caribbean nations, to suffer continuous actions that pursue the destruction of its constitutional order. Cuba reiterates its permanent solidarity and support for the heroic Venezuelan people, its civic-military union and the Bolivarian and Chavez government led by President Nicolás Maduro Moros.

Haiti

I underline the historical and ethical responsibility of our nations with the sister Republic of Haiti and the need to contribute to its development, with strict adherence to the will of its government and the legitimate needs of its people.

The blockade of Cuba

We Cubans deeply thank our Caribbean brothers for their unalterable position of respect and solidarity towards our country. We will never forget the permanent support for resolutions against the blockade of Cuba, as well as the numerous expressions of solidarity in the general debates of the General Assembly of the United Nations Organization and in other international forums.

This support is even more relevant in the face of the setbacks caused by the actions of the new government of the United States against Cuba. The blockade is the biggest obstacle to the economic and social development of our country, and to Cuba’s economic, commercial and financial relations with the world.

Caribbean brothers:

“In the faithful of America are the Antilles,” José Martí wrote in 1894, the most universal of Cubans. His ideas, widely shared today, give us the conviction that an increasingly prosperous, equitable, safe, sustainable and united Caribbean is possible; you can always count on the eternal friendship, gratitude and support of Cuba.

Thank you very much (Applause).

 

Latin America Celebrates Centenary of Russian Revolution

Source: TeleSUR
November 7 2017

venezuelans gather for October revolution 100th.pngVenezuelans gather to celebrate the 100 years of the October Revolution.
| Photo: Twitter / PartidoPSUV

Bolivian President Evo Morales congratulated the Russian people on the 100th anniversary of their revolution.

Thousands across Latin America are mobilizing and celebrating the centennial anniversary of the Russian Revolution with various events throughout the region.

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In Venezuela, workers are marching from Caracas’ Autonomous National Telephone Company to the Miraflores Presidential Palace.

“We, as revolutionaries and socialist, join in this global commemoration,” said Freddy Bernal, a member of the National Directorate of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela, who called for the mobilization.

In Peru, the Communist Party is hosting an event at the Auditorium of the Telephone Workers’ Union of Peru to celebrate the Russian Revolution. A series of events are also being held in Uruguay.

Meanwhile in Bolivia, President Evo Morales congratulated the Russian people on the 100th anniversary of their revolution, describing it as an example in the fight against tyranny and inequality.

“The Russian Revolution triumphed on this day, one hundred years ago. United, peasants and workers managed to form the first socialist state in the world,” Morales posted on his Twitter account.

The Bolivian government is slated to host an international meeting titled “A 100 years of the Russian Revolution,” in which its influence on left-wing movements in Latin America will be analyzed. Bolivia’s Vice-President, Alvaro Garcia Linera, is also scheduled to give a keynote address at the Central Bank auditorium in La Paz for the occasion.

Other events are taking place until Thursday in Peru, Chile, Brazil and elsewhere in Latin America.

Russia’s October Socialist Revolution took place on Oct. 25, 1917, according to the Julian calendar, or on Nov. 7, according to the Gregorian.

It was the second phase of the 1917 Revolution, which was preceded by a mass women’s protest as they took to Nevsky Prospekt, the main avenue of the former Russian capital of Petrograd, to protest their immiseration. Within three or four days, the Tsarist monarchy was vanquished

Venezuela Defies Western Attempts at Debt Strangulation

President Maduro: “We have reached an agreement to refinance and restructure the debt with Russia”

Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro announced this Sunday that the government had reached an agreement to refinance and restructure the Venezuelan debt with Russia.

“We have reached an agreement with Russia, this week will be signing an agreement where refinancing is established,” the president said.

“We have complied with all our international commitments,” the Venezuelan leader recalled.

Maduro Tweeted: “This Monday, the first round of renegotiation of the Venezuelan external debt will take place, we are overcoming the economic war, they will not be able to beat us.”  It is worth noting that 91 percent of all holders of the Venezuelan debt will participate tomorrow in the first stage of debt renegotiation and refinance.

Nicolas Maduro Nov 2017 1.jpg

Venezuela Swears In Newly-Elected Governors

Source:  TeleSUR
October 19 2017

venezuela swear in newly elected governors.jpgVenezuela’s ANC President Delcy Rodriguez is flanked by newly elected governors who are being sworn in by the ANC. | Photo: Twitter / @EstherYez

  • The governing United Socialist Party of Venezuela, or PSUV, won 18 of the 23 governorships.

Venezuelan National Constituent Assembly, ANC, President Delcy Rodriguez is presiding over a special session of the political body to swear in candidates who won Sunday’s gubernatorial election.

RELATED:   Venezuelan Regional Elections Observer: Process was Smooth

In direct reference to the U.S. “empire,” Rodriguez proclaimed that “aggression, sanctions and blockades that pretend to break the will of the people of Venezuela will fail.”

Rodriguez continued by saying that “today is a day of victory for the people,” adding that Sunday’s gubernatorial election “marks a new spirit” because “Venezuelans want to live in peace.”

Accompanied by Tibisay Lucena, president of the National Electoral Council, CNE, she emphasized that the ANC, vigilant of the will of each citizen, participated in election audits to confirm the lack of foul play.

This transparent, public accountability measure has been established by the Organic Law of Electoral Processes. Article 4 of the law states that “the National Electoral Council, as the governing body and highest authority of the Electoral Power, shall exercise the direction, conduct, supervision and control of electoral processes.”

In that vein, Rodriguez reiterated Venezuela’s robust voting audits, mechanisms that have been hailed by the Council of Electoral Experts in Latin America, the Organization of Solidarity with the People of Asia, Africa and Latin America and even former U.S. President Jimmy Carter.

There is no room for fraud

“There is no room for fraud,” unlike claims made by opposition leader Gerardo Blyde, Rodriguez said, adding that even “parties on the right endorsed all audits.”

She went on to say that a “rebirth of Bolivarianism” transpired with Sunday’s election results.

“The president of the Bolivarian Republic, Nicolas Maduro, defeated the leaders of the empire with his leadership. This election represented a new chapter for the country, a renewed hope for the Venezuelan people.”

She concluded that the democratic victory sent an emphatic message to the international community.

The governing United Socialist Party of Venezuela, or PSUV, won 18 of 23 governorships.

Raul: Venezuela has given another great lesson in peace, democratic vocation, courage, and dignity

Message from Army General Raúl Castro to Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro

raul y nicolas 4.jpg“I congratulate you on the results of the state elections. Venezuela has given another great lesson in peace, democratic vocation, courage, and dignity.

Source:  Granma
October 17, 2017 08:10:30

by: Granma | internet@granma.cu

Havana

October 16, 2017

Comrade Nicolás Maduro Moros

President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela

Esteemed Nicolás:

I congratulate you on the results of the state elections. Venezuela has given another great lesson in peace, democratic vocation, courage, and dignity .

The legacy of Chávez is alive. He and Fidel would be very proud of this victory.

You can always count on the support and solidarity of Cuba.

An embrace,

Raúl Castro Ruz

President of the Councils of State and Ministers of the Republic of Cuba

PSUV Wins Regional Elections, Assures Maduro’s Reelection

Source:  TeleSUR
October 17 2017

By: Dr. Jesus Silva R.

President Maduro Oct 2017.jpgVenezuelan President Nicolas Maduro at a PSUV conference in Caracas. | Photo: PSUV

17 October 2017

by Dr. Jesus Silva R.

It’s time to launch diplomatic bridges to begin to reverse the proposed isolation of Venezuela.

With 18 governorships won in the elections of Oct. 15, 2017, the United Socialist Party of Venezuela, PSUV, becomes the favorite to win the presidential election in 2018. With Chavismo’s 18 regions and the support of the National Constituent Assembly, ANC, the political conditions are in place to virtually ensure the re-election of President Nicolas Maduro.

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The debacle of the Venezuelan opposition started after they called for violent street protests that produced 150 dead and more than a thousand injured and wounded. They insisted on this strategy for four months and later abandoned it without apologizing to the Venezuelan people.

Then came the regional elections and the opposition signed up to participate in them after they had sworn never to leave the battle in the streets. So much incoherence, cynicism and irresponsibility was punished by hundreds of thousands of opposition supporters who were disillusioned with the opposition Democratic Unity Roundtable, MUD, and did not vote for them.

The biggest challenge of the PSUV

Now that the electoral battle is over, the biggest challenge of the PSUV is the economic recovery of the country and restoring the supply of food and medicines. There should be a call for dialogue with business sectors which had joined the assault against the government through the sabotage of production and the voluntary reduction of activities with the aim of causing social unrest.

Now these entrepreneurs who have witnessed their political allies in the MUD soundly defeated at the ballot box, they have the opportunity to approach the government and through a sincere relationship, contribute to the recovery of the national economy.

Likewise, on the political front, the revolutionary leadership has the opportunity to re-legitimize party authorities as ruled in Article 67 of the Constitution by means of internal elections. The next phase would be to create more spaces for interaction with those members of the rank and file who do not have an organized militancy within the PSUV itself. Such members wish to participate in the political and social tasks of the revolutionary process currently in the hands of their leaders.

The people voted for peace

For the international community, the message is clear: the people voted for peace, do not want a foreign military invasion, nor violent street protests (guarimbas), nor financial blockades, nor terrorism. It’s time to launch diplomatic bridges to begin to reverse the proposed isolation of Venezuela.

Finally, we salute the democratic gesture of Maduro to immediately recognize the election results issued by the National Electoral Council, including those that were unfavorable for the PSUV, and to call the new opposition governors to work together with the central government for the good of the whole country.

Friends of Venezuela denounce the actions of the OAS Secretary General

Press Release
Friends of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela

October 13 2017

WE DENOUNCE  LUIS  ALMAGRO’S LATEST  UNLAWFUL  INTERVENTION  IN  THE  AFFAIRS  OF  VENEZUELA

bolivarian republic of venezuela.jpgFriends of Venezuela denounce the actions of the Organization of American States (OAS) Secretary General Luis Almagro, who, today — the 13th of October 2017 – in Washington DC in the United States of America (USA), purported to swear in the members of a so-called “parallel” Venezuelan Supreme Court, in gross violation of the principles of international law and sovereignty.
Almagro’s actions are nothing less than a gross and offensive attempt to frustrate the Venezuelan people’s peaceful and democratic process !
On the 30th of July 2017 we were all inspired by the Venezuelan people’s courage, when over 8 million people participated in the elections for a National Constituent Assembly, and thereby halted the campaign of orchestrated violence that sectors of the political Opposition forces in Venezuela had inflicted on the nation.
The peace-loving peoples of the world looked on at this spectacle, inspired by the Venezuelan people’s assertion that the only path forward is a democratic and constitutional one.
Today’s unlawful events in Washington, on the other hand, are an ugly and repugnant repudiation of the Venezuelan people’s openly expressed desire for peace and constitutionality, and reflect illicit interference by external forces in the sovereign processes of Venezuela.
While this takes place in Washington D.C., in Venezuela itself, members of the Government, the Opposition and other relevant entities campaign for gubernatorial elections that will take place this Sunday the 15th of October. Furthermore, after many efforts by the Government to establish dialogue, the Venezuelan political opposition has finally agreed to begin talks in a peaceful and lawful manner. In light of this background, one is forced to ask why– at this time of all times– is Almagro carrying out an activity that can only be described as an illegal and destructive intervention in the internal affairs of Venezuela?
How can a multilateral organization like the OAS justify swearing in an illegitimate Supreme Court in the territory of a foreign country? This is a travesty beyond all comprehension, and the member states of the OAS would be well advised to take immediate steps to dismiss the organization’s unprincipled and errant Secretary General.
Today’s actions at the OAS disrupt Latin America and the Caribbean’s shared commitment to self-determination and to the sovereign equality of all states, and must be condemned by all right thinking and peace-loving people.
We encourage all Venezuelans to go out and vote in numbers in the gubernatorial elections scheduled for Sunday the 15th of October!
Indeed, we say to the Venezuelan people:- The world celebrates your determination to defend a democratic model that is participatory and protagonist. And we stand with you in safeguarding our region as a Zone for Peace, in keeping with the “Havana Declaration” approved by the Heads of State and Government of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC).
Long live the Bolivarian Republic and the Bolivarian Revolution!

Friends of Venezuela