Cuba to take best cyclists to Pan- American road championship

The best Cuban riders nowadays, Arlenis Sierra and Marlies Mejias, head the Caribbean team to attend the 2018 Pan-American Road Cycling Championships (Elite, U23 and Women´s) based in San Juan, Argentina, from May 1-6.

Sierra returned a week ago from Europe, where she had an outstanding performance in the World Tour running for the Italian club Astana Women's Team, and she currently appears eleventh in the ranking of that event.

Mejias, who is enrolled in the American team Sho-Air Twenty20, is along with Sierra Cuba´s best trump card not only in this continental competition, as they also aspire to several medals in the Barranquilla 2018 Central American and Caribbean Games.

The women´s squad also includes Iraida García, Maylin Sanchez, Claudia Baro and the experienced Yudelmis Dominguez, who has returned with much desire of regaining successes.

On the other hand, the Cuban men´s team is made up by the well-known Pedro Portuondo, Jans Carlos Arias and Felix Nodarse.

The 2018 Pan-American Road Cycling Championships will be attended by a large number of high level riders and it will grant tickets to Lima 2019 Pan American Games.

  • Published in Sports

North American Activist Calls for Ending Blockade Against Cuba

The coordinator of the National Network of Solidarity with Cuba in the United States, Cheryl Labash, demanded today that her country''s government lifts the blockade it maintains on the island for more than 50 years.

We are here to support the people of the Caribbean nation and corroborate our rejection to the economic, commercial and financial siege against Cuba, Labash told Prensa Latina.

She arrived in Havana as part of the 13th International May Day Solidarity Brigade.

According to the activist, the United States is one of the most represented countries within that solidarity bloc with more than 70 brigade members.

Labash also highlighted the need that the U.S. government returns to Cuba the territory illegally occupied by the naval base in Guantanamo, east of Cuba.

The detention center, opened in 2002 and had about 800 inmates -now 41-, is designated by international organizations as a place where torture and systematic violations of human rights against prisoners were committed.

Speaking about the worsening of Washington's policy toward Havana, Labash expressed her rejection to the interventionist positions by U.S. President, Donald Trump.

The activist will participate with almost 300 brigade members from Latin America, Europe, Asia and Canada in the central activities for the International Workers' Day, an event that includes a massive parade at the Revolution Square in Havana and in the provincial capitals.

Received yesterday at the Julio Antonio Mella International Camp, in Artemisa, the 13th International May Day Solidarity Brigade will complete an intense two-week agenda in Cuba.

  • Published in Cuba

Cuban Consulate in US Hosted Travel Agencies Executives

The Cuban Consulate in the USA held a meeting with more than half a hundred executives of travel agencies and charter flight companies on the island''s migration policy.

According to a report on the Embassy's website, Consulate staff provided broad information on the new regulations passed as part of the updating process of Cuban migration policy, in particular on the paperwork associated with it.

The two sides talked over the needed quality to improve efficiency and reducing time, as well as on bettering Consulate services.

Cuba's Consulate continues functioning despite hardships created by the unilateral decision of the Trump Administration to reduce its staff from last October, the diplomatic report underscores.

Links between Cuba and the US have suffered a reversion since the two countries agreed in December, 2014, to start improving relations, due to Trump's imposing restrictions and a harsher line in January 2017.

  • Published in Now

Bound for the Kennedy Center: One Cinema, One Country

A retrospective of Cuban cinema from the last half century will be offered as part of the programme of the Art of Cuba Festival with venue at the Kennedy Center of Washington.

It’s only six movies, but somehow they summarize almost six decades of cinema in Revolution.

At the Family Theater in the Kennedy Center, located in the U.S. capital will take place a retrospective of Cuban cinema, with films that have rendered prestige to Cuba worldwide.

On Saturday May 12th will be run probably the most famous of Cuban films of all the times: Memories of Underdevelopment, directed by Tomás Gutiérrez Alea in year 1968.

This film joins many of the lists of best Latin Americans film creations.

Not by accident: its formal and conceptual values distinguished it since its premiere, since it was run in international theaters.

It was (It’s) an intimate chronicle of the excited first years of the Revolution that presents contradictions and doesn’t avoid common places.

Portrait Of Teresa from Pastor Vega will also be included, filmed in 1979.

It was an overwhelming assertion in a hot debate around those years: women’s full emancipation.

The movie became public phenomenon; the discussions it generates reached several places of the Cuban society.

The actress in the leading role of the film, Daisy Granados, gave a memorable performance.

The first day will close with Lucía, another classic, shot in 1968 by Humberto Solás.

Three episodes of our history are shown with the mastery singularity and aesthetic finesse of Solás.

The main topic is women, exalted as main character of our revolution. They are, in definitive, three stories of three women who became symbols.

On Sunday May 13th other more recent films will be run. Some of them have won awards in the New Latin American Film Festival, an appointment that this year celebrates its 40th anniversary.

Strawberry and Chocolate, of Tomás Guitérrez Alea and Juan Carlos Tabío, shook prejudices in the early 90’s.

It was a valiant and necessary movie, a landmark in the struggle for the complete acceptance of gays in society.

It is one of the most acclaimed works of Cuban cinema at an international level.

Suite Havana, of Fernando Pérez, is a beautiful, lyrical and deep metaphor on the daily life of a country and its people.

Few times a city has been depicted with such poetry and commitment, filled of suggesting and painful contrasts.

Lastly, Conducta, directed by Ernesto Daranas, another story of our daily life; straightforward, without euphemisms that speaks of the sacrifice of a teacher in difficult times.

A song to love, to friendship, to the usefulness of virtue.

There are missing, of course, other important films in this retrospective; but the North American public will have within their reach a fair and very representative selection. Ideal to approach a country and its circumstances.

Cubasi Translation Staff / Amilkal Labañino Valdés

  • Published in Now

Cuban president meets with Bolivia's Evo Morales to strengthen bilateral ties

Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel on Monday met with his Bolivian counterpart, Evo Morales, to strengthen political and economic relations between the two nations following the election last week of the new head of State of this Caribbean nation.

Morales, who arrived in the Cuban capital earlier Monday, was received by Diaz-Canel with military honors at the Palace of the Revolution and later held talks in private.

Both leaders agreed to deepen political and economic ties between the two nations.

Promoting continental integration in an adverse geopolitical context was also a topic of conversation among both heads of State.

Earlier, Morales paid tribute to the island's national hero, Jose Marti, with a flower wreath at Havana's Revolution Square.

In statements to the press, the Bolivian leader congratulated Diaz-Canel on his election as president last week and highlighted Cuba's solidarity with the world in particular with medical brigades in more than 60 nations.

"We are here to move forward a new bilateral agenda and continue Fidel (Castro)'s legacy," Morales said.

He also said that his visit to Havana also responds to promoting the process of union and integration in Latin America and the Caribbean with the new Cuban president.

"We came to discuss various issues of a commercial cooperation and in terms of integration, to revitalize the agenda of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA) and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Celac)," he said.

During his visit, the Bolivian president will also visit the Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology west of Havana to learn first-hand about Cuba's scientific developments and bolster cooperation in this sector.

Morales is the second president to visit Cuba after the election of Diaz-Canel last Thursday by the National Assembly.

Venezuelan leader Nicolas Maduro visited Havana this weekend and met with Diaz-Canel to set up an economic, cultural and political cooperation plan for the next ten years.

  • Published in Now

Rouhani congratulates Cuba's new president on election

Iran's President Rouhani has sent a message to Miguel Mario Díaz-Canel Bermúdez to offer congratulations on his election as the President of the Council of State of Cuba and expressed hope that amicable ties between the two countries continue.

President Hassan Hassan Rouhani's message is as follows:

"In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful

Your Excellency Mr Miguel Mario Díaz-Canel Bermúdez,

President of the Council of State of Cuba,

I express my sincerest congratulations to your Excellency on your election as the President of the Council of State of Cuba.

The government and people of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Republic of Cuba have always attempted in hard times to create a safe world based on justice and moderation and I hope these deep, amicable bonds between the two countries continue in the new government.

Hassan Rouhani,

President of the Islamic Republic of Iran"

The 57-year-old bureaucrat Díaz-Canel, was elected by the Cuban National Assembly with a vote of 603-1 on Thursday. He becomes president of the Cuban Council of State and Council of Ministers.

  • Published in Cuba

Mariano Rajoy Congratulates New Cuban President

The head of the Spanish government, Mariano Rajoy, today congratulated the recently appointed Cuban president, Miguel Diaz-Canel, whom he wished success in his new responsibility, and highlighted the relations between the two countries.

In a telegram sent to Diaz-Canel, Rajoy conveyed his 'most sincere congratulations and wishes to succeed' in his assumption to 'the highest post in the Republic of Cuba', in reference to his designation as the head of the Councils of States and of Ministers.

'Cuba occupies a special place for Spaniards: we are two brother countries, members of the same big Ibero-American family, united by strong historic ties and friendship,' the Spanish president noted.

In addition, he underlined that the Cuban people can always count on a sincere and loyal friend in the Spanish people. 'I expect that in this new stage that opens, Cuba succeeds in overcoming the challenges that it faces and achieves the prosperity, peace and well-being that we wish it so much,' concluded the text, published by the Palace of La Moncloa, the venue of the Spanish Executive.

Diaz-Canel was elected the Cuban president last Thursday, at a session of the People's Power National Assembly (Parliament).

  • Published in Cuba

The Failde Orchestra to the Kennedy Center: music from Cuba to the world

The Miguel Failde Typical Orchestra is one of the Cuban bands that make up the delegation that will participate at the Cuban Culture Festival in the United States.

A typical and young orchestra, under the direction of Ethiel Failde, a musician from Matanzas who carries in his blood and heart the musical wealth of this island, is travelling to the Kennedy Center in early May with a big suitcase loaded with traditional Cuban rhythms.                                                          

Why? “Of course, to share music and represent Cuba” What are you taking? “We are going to take our active repertoire, danzon, mambo, cha cha cha”. What does it mean? “A privilege”.

The reasons to feel honored with this opportunity are quite evident: “The only popular music bands that are travelling from Cuba are Los Van Van and the Failde Orchestra”. If you add that the festival kicks off with Omara Portuondo, that immense singer who also has a very special place in the soul of the Miguel Failde Typical Orchestra, then enthusiasm increases.

However, other reasons also encourage these young and talented musicians, who have updated anthological pieces, such as “Almendra”, in a renewing and fresh work, but in a constant dialogue with the roots.

“To able to participate in the inaugural gala is something very important for us and to be able to attend this political juncture between Cuba and United States, to be present at the Kennedy Center, and to represent our country with a large Cuban delegation, a big cultural embassy, is something very great”.

And the fact is that while US President Donald Trump in passing tries to undo, to separate and to break, the arts build and peoples meet through the most universal of languages, which is clearly listened to from Havana to Washington: culture.

Translated by Jorge Mesa Benjamin / Cubasi Translation Staff

  • Published in Now
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