Cubans bid farewell to Alicia Alonso

Thousands of Cubans converged at Havana´s Great Theater on Saturday to bring flowers and bid farewell to the legendary ballet star Alicia Alonso who died in Havana on Thursday at 98.

Multiple floral wreaths, led by those sent by Cuban Communist Party leader Raul Castro and President Miguel Diaz-Canel, escorted the coffin which was placed in front of the Theater´s grand staircase. The auditorium, which currently bears her name,  was the venue where she first performed 69 years ago, with her first company.

People from all walks of life, authorities, ballet students, artists, intellectuals and admirers lined up to file past the artist’s mortal remains.

Since the announcement of the ballet star’s passing, numerous events have been held island-wide to celebrate her life and legacy. A planned performance of the National Ballet of Cuba, scheduled to inaugurate the newly refurbished Sauto Theater in Matanzas, went ahead Friday evening as planned, in tribute to the Prima Ballerina Assoluta’s concept of the show must go on.

A live national television broadcast started at 9 am carrying images of the funeral of the founder of the Cuban National Ballet, of the Cuban School of Ballet and one of the most extraordinary figures of world dance art of the last century.

The burial ceremony was scheduled for 5 pm.

A declaration issued by the National Unmion of Writers and Artists – UNEAC, stated  that Alicia Alonso "was and will be one of the most intimate symbols of national culture."

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Diaz-Canel to star European tour on Sunday

The President of the Republic of Cuba, Miguel Diaz-Canel, will begin a tour of European countries this Sunday, which will include official visits to Ireland, the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.

He will also attend the 18th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement, which will take place in Baku, Republic of Azerbaijan, on the 25th and 26th of this month.

Cuba was the only country in the Latin American and Caribbean region to participate in the 1st Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement held in Belgrade, capital of the then Yugoslavia, in 1961.

The island was among its founders with the prestige of having  crushed, only five months before and in less than 72 hours, the invasion organized by the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States government. Cuba has hosted two Summits of the Non-Aligned Movement.

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Universities of Nicaragua and Cuba boost cooperation

Universities of Nicaragua and Cuba have strengthened cooperation to improve educational processes and the post-graduate training of professors, University of Havana Deputy Rector Norma Barrios said on Friday.

The two countries have a long history of joint work in that field, but collaboration between universities and Higher Education ministries has been revitalized at present with concrete projects, said Barrios, a delegate to the 4th National Congress of Higher Education in Nicaragua.

'The Autonomous University of Nicaragua (Unan-Managua) is very aware of the need for ? change in favor of better training professional human beings, and in that direction, the two houses of higher studies have cooperated over the past few months in two fundamental areas: curricular transformation and quality management,' the Cuban deputy rector told Prensa Latina.

Sharing experiences and ways to do things in those fields has brought a group of Cuban experts to the congress, which is attended by representatives of Nicaraguan public and private universities with a view to optimizing the learning-teaching process according to the 21st century's situation and challenges.

Barrios underlined that another goal of cooperation is to mobilize Nicaragua's university community to participate directly in the construction of its own quality management system, in which they will be the major protagonists of curricular transformation.

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Cuba attends RedIbero meeting

Cuba is attending the Ibero-American Network of Trade Promotion Organizations (RedIbero) meeting held in Bucaramanga, Colombia.

The Caribbean island is represented at the meeting by the Center for Foreign Trade and Investment Services (ProCuba), which presented to participants its experiences in the activity.

Cuba also launched the call for the upcoming Havana International Fair, FIHAV 2019, to be held next November 4-8 at Expocuba fairgrounds, according to the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment.

The RedIbero meeting takes place as part of Expo Aladi, a Latin American meeting aimed at increasing and strengthening trade between member countries.

Promotion Centers from Spain, Portugal and Latin America also participate in the event.

The Ibero-American Network of Trade Promotion Organizations was born in Madrid on June 17, 1999, as a rotating conference to deepen the relations of member organizations, debate on technical issues of common interest, as well as the exchange of experiences and successful trade promotion tools.

It has a biannual, voluntary and rotating presidency and during 2017-2019 it is headed by the Foreign Trade Promoter of Costa Rica.

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Alicia Alonso's funeral announced for Saturday

Havana, October 18 (RHC) Cuba's Ministry of Culture (MINCULT) has informed that funeral honors of legendary Cuban ballet dancer Alicia Alonso will be held next Saturday in the Great Theater that bears her name.

Starting at 9:00 am, the Cuban people will be able to pay tribute to the great artist.
 
Her family wants her remains to be buried that same day in a family pantheon in Colon Cemetery in Havana, the city where she was born on December 21, 1920.
 
Cuban cultural institutions, organizations of creators, artists, and writers, together with Alicia Alonso's relatives, have agreed, not to observe mourning, but a great tribute that will be shared by all her people.
 
The Ministry of Culture will provide more information on the details of the funeral.
 
It also conveyed its condolences to Alicia's family, to the National Ballet of Cuba,  and all her admirers in Cuba and other parts of the world.

Edited by Jorge Ruiz Miyares

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Cuba and Mexico ratify their friendship

The governments of Cuba and Mexico ratified on Thursday the will to continue developing political-diplomatic dialogue and to broaden economic-commercial, investment, and cooperation relations.

Cuban Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bruno Rodríguez, confirmed this on Twitter, where he commented on the results of the 'cordial meeting' between the president of his country, Miguel Díaz-Canel, and his host Andrés Manuel López Obrador.

López Obrador welcomed the visitor in the Patio of Honor of the National Palace before holding a private meeting.

In his usual morning press conference, Lopez Obrador said that the visit by his Cuban counterpart was important 'because the Cuban people and the Mexican people are brothers'.

Shortly after arriving in the northern nation, Diaz-Canel expressed his joy for 'returning to the much-loved Mexico, a country so closely linked to the history of Cuba and of all Latin America', now as the new president of the Republic, after being elected last October 10.

The Cuban president was back in Havana in the early hours of Friday. He was welcomed at Jose Marti International Airport by Communist Party leder, Raul Castro.

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Spain's Foreign Minister acknowledges restoration work in Old Havana

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation of the Kingdom of Spain, Josep Borrell, thanked the historian of the city of Havana, Eusebio Leal, for the titanic work of recovery of the heritage of the old section of the Cuban capital.

During the tour that both personalities made through emblematic sites of the Historical Center, the visitor said he was glad to meet again with Leal, whom he described as the indisputable author of the important restoration and conservation work.

During the tour, Borrell sent a message to King Philip VI and Queen Letizia, informing them that they are expected in Havana, a city that is being groomed for its 500th anniversary, to be celebfated next November 16.

The Spanish diplomat told the press that he was grateful for the hospitality received from Cuban authorities, and said that the necessary high-level political consultations had taken place before the monarchs' visit, scheduled for next month.

On Thursday, the visitor, guided by Leal, toured the facilities of the Palacio del Segundo Cabo, a center that has benefited from the collaboration of Europe and that after its reconstruction, it is contributing  to spreading cultural relations between Cuba and the so-called Old Continent.

Together, they walked through the Plaza de Armas and reached the Palacio de los Capitanes Generales, where they appreciated an exclusive presentation by the Camerata Romeu string ensemble.

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MITM Americas represents a particular boost for Cuban tourism

With the holding for the second consecutive year of the MITM Americas meeting in Havana, today Cuban tourism is receiving a further boost, this time focused on meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions (MICE) travel.

To better understand this backdrop, it is important to remember that MITM Events is a Spanish company with a global impact in a highly dynamic travel sphere.

For this reason, Cuban Minister of Tourism Manuel Marrero, at the opening of the 23rd edition of MITM Americas, expressed his satisfaction that the Hotel Nacional of this city, a symbol of hospitality and tradition, was chosen as the venue for such an event.

The 23rd MITM Americas, which will conclude tomorrow, Friday, today enters a phase in which delegates travel to different Cuban tourist attractions, and learn more about the travel industry here.

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The meeting brings together 600 executives, tour operators, travel agents and other specialists from 65 nations, of which only 80 will negotiate contacts, representing a particular demand and impeccable seriousness.

The meeting aims at the development of one of the most dynamic tourist sectors on a global level. Cuba, through Mintur, has trusted MITM since 2000, when for the first time a Cuban delegation attended MITM Americas in Guadalajara, Mexico.

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