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.

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President Evo Morales Visits Cuba

The President of Bolivia, Evo Morales, arrived yesterday in Cuba for an official visit.

He will meet the highest authorities of the Caribbean country.

As planned, the Bolivian leader will place a wreath to the National Hero Jose Marti on Monday and afterwards, Morales will have his reception and the official conversations with Miguel Diaz-Canel.

In the afternoon,the Bolivian president will visit the Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology in Havana.

Morales is the second foreign leader who has visited Cuba since last April 19 Diaz Canel substituted Raul Castro as president of The Councils of State and Ministers.

The revolutionary Cuban leader, who finished this week his second term as the Head of the State and Government of the Caribbean nation, will continue as the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba up to 2021.

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Bolivia: Massive Rallies Launch Evo Morales' Reelection Bid

Massive rallies were held in four Bolivian departments on Wednesday to launch President Evo Morales' 2019 presidential candidacy. Movement Towards Socialism (MAS) organized the support rallies in collaboration with the Federation of Campesino Workers of Cochabamba, Cocaleros (coca leaf growers) and neighborhood assemblies.

In Cochabamba, Jhonny Pardo, leader of the campesino federation, addressed the crowd of roughly 50,000 MAS supporters saying “we will guarantee the continuation of the process of change, even if it costs us our lives, we will achieve the continuity our brother Evo Morales.”

In La Paz, Sandro Ramirez of El Alto’s neighborhood assembly rallied supporters in Plaza San Francisco and criticized the opposition. “The right-wing’s goal is for Evo (Morales) not to participate in the 2019 elections, of course, because they don’t have a candidate,” Ramirez said.

In the Tarija and Cobija departments, the MAS party organized separate rallies. Via Twitter Morales thanked his supporters.

"I thank the Bolivian people who demonstrated in several cities to support the Democratic and Cultural Revolution and the Process of Change. Your love makes me commit to continue working for our homeland," Evo wrote.

Morales's opposition also took to the streets in what they called a national civic strike. Alfredo Reda, a government official, said the demonstrations were a failure because “it didn’t generate sufficient impact to paralyze productive, service and commercial activities.”  

The Opposition has, however, vowed to continue their protest with street blockages, and "massive marches". Juan Flores, president of the civic committees, said “we will coordinate with all the institutions an indefinite national civic strike. A national march towards La Paz will follow to ask the president to obey the will of the people.”

Rolando Villena, a former Bolivian ombudsman, has also voiced opposition to Morales' candidacy stating that the group, who are opposed to it will request a hearing with the Inter American Commission of Human Rights (ICHR), to present their arguments for the lawsuit against the state.

"We are going to request a hearing so that we can know the state (of the lawsuit) and where we are and continue in this action because there has to be a report from the International Commission on Human Rights," Villena explained.

Opposition groups presented a lawsuit against the decision by Bolivia’s Constitutional Tribunal to allow Morales to enter as a candidate in the 2019 presidential elections after Bolivians narrowly rejected a proposed constitutional reform preventing re-election.

Despite the results of 2016 referendum, several international organizations, groups, and political leaders have proclaimed their support for Morales.

Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, a former Spanish president, said while speaking to gathering in Bolivia on Wednesday: "I'm here because I've seen Bolivia change, improve... If there has been a great president that is Evo Morales." Zapatero comments were supported by, Alberto Garzon a Spanish politician, economist, and member of United Left said: "We are twinned, the fight of Evo is the struggle of the peoples and workers of the whole world."

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Evo Morales Highlights Cuba's Resistance to U.S. Hostility

Bolivian President Evo Morales has highlighted Cuba's resistance to the hostility of the U.S. government, which has maintained the economic, financial and commercial blockade against Cuba for more than 50 years.

In a message on his Twitter account, the Bolivian leader praised the dignity and sovereignty of Cubans in the face of U.S. interference.

He recalled events that mark the historical relations between the Caribbean nation and the U.S., marked by interference and an unsuccessful imperial logic.

He mentioned the rupture of diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba on January 3, 1961 and the first defeat of imperialism in Americas at Playa Girón -- the Bay of Pigs -- in April of the same year.

Edited by Jorge Ruiz Miyares

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Evo Morales Reaffirms Bolivia's Support for Cuba vs. U.S. Blockade

President Evo Morales reaffirmed yesterday Bolivia's support for Cuba in the struggle against the economic and financial blockade imposed by the United States on the Caribbean island for more than 50 years.

The president posted on his Twitter account @evoespueblo: 'We reiterate our solidarity with the sister Republic of Cuba, which for more than 50 years has heroically faced the U.S. criminal blockade, hardened by a government determined to impose its arrogance, pride and racism at the expense of world peace and the people's peaceful coexistence.'

Morales criticized the measures adopted by Washington and described them as 'the worst attack on the principles of sovereign equality of the States.'

He also called for non-intervention and non-interference by the United States in internal affairs, because 'they violate the rights to freedom of commerce and navigation,' he said.

On November 1, during the presentation at the United Nations of the draft resolution entitled 'Necessity of ending the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the United States of America on Cuba', the permanent representative of Bolivia, Sacha Llorenti, asked for the total lifting of that measure.

Llorenti affirmed that the blockade of Cuba is unjust, immoral and illegitimate, and an example of the United States' unilaterality.

'The United States imposes a blockade that contravenes the UN Charter, undermines the principles of sovereignty and attempts to undermine the Cuban people's self-determination,' he stressed.

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Bolivia's President Winds UP Working Visit to Cuba

Bolivia''s President Evo Morales wound up a state visit to Cuba after meeting First Vice President Miguel Diaz Canel, his last activity of his agenda in the island.

In the encounter, Morales was accompanied by his Foreign Minister Fernando Huanacuni, the Cuban Television prime news hour reported.

The Bolivian Head of State was seen off at Havana international airport Jose Marti by Diaz Canel personally. He's flying to Mendoza, Argentina, to attend a Mercosur gathering.

Morales arrived in Cuba on Wednesday evening from Managua, Nicaragua, where he attended celebrations for the 38th Anniversary of the Sandinista Revolution and took part at the 23rd Meeting of the Sao Paula Forum, in which he reaffirmed his solidarity with Cuba and Venezuela.

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Bolivia's Evo Morales Says Racism a Tool for World Domination

Morales warned against the perils of racism, referring to the state of ignorance, turned economic and institutional apparatus, as a tool of domination.

"Racism is one of the instruments of domination, subjugation, and humiliation, not only in Bolivia but throughout the world," said President Evo Morales.

RELATED: Bolivia's Evo Morales Criticizes How the OAS is Manipulated

A member of the Aymara nation, and the first Indigenous president of Bolivia, Morales was speaking at the Fifth Session of the Ibero-American Network Against Discrimination in the city of Santa Cruz.

During his speech Morales warned against the dangers of racism, referring to the state of ignorance, turned economic and institutional apparatus, as a weapon of domination. He added that what is needed to free Pachamama from the scourge of racism was a “plurinational planet.”

"Like here, in Bolivia, the cost was hefty. We suffered a lot in 2006, 2007, 2008, to form a plurinational state. Our goal should be, our desire should be, to develop a plurinational America, a plurinational planet, and not only a plurinational state of Bolivia because our people are so diverse around the world," Morales emphasized.

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The Bolivian president said that approving measures against racism is simple, but difficult to implement and enforce.

He suggested taking counsel from young people to achieve a more just society, free of racism and discrimination.

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Evo Morales: New Cabinet Will Be Committed to the People

La Paz, Jan 19 (Prensa Latina) The new cabinet that will be in charge of the country's management in the period 2017-2018 will be mainly committed to the Bolivian people, Bolivian President Evo Morales said today.

Addressing the press, after a meeting with representatives, deputies and senators, the president stressed that some ministers of the previous administration will no longer be a part of the cabinet, but others will be ratified with the aim of strengthening the country's policy.

On the other hand, the parliament will have to choose the new justice authorities, which will count with men and women with a lot of commitment to the State and with experience to improve this sector, Morales added.

Questioned on the case of the ex-minister of Environment and Water, Alexandra Moreira, the president of the Andean-Amazon nation said that social networks have echoed negative comments on this situation.

Moreira had to appear before the Pluri-national Legislative Assembly to report on the crisis of the water supply; however, she submitted her resignation with a document in which he responded to at least 10 requests for a written report containing data on the rationing of the liquid of La Paz since November, because of a severe drought.

The ex-minister stressed the improvement in the last weeks of the supply service in the 94 districts of the city, affected by the rationing initiated on November 8, due to the drying of Hampaturi and Incachaca dams.

She also considered that the Government acted in a timely manner to face this emergency, implementing a distribution of drinking water through tanker trucks and fixed tanks.

Starting this day, the preparatory work begins to appoint the new board of directors of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate of Bolivia.

Former statements of the president of the Legislative Assembly, Álvaro García Linera, report that the activities of the new period include laws on the energy system, export of electricity.

In addition, the plan includes the construction of dams, treatment of atomic energy and the Lithium, plant. In that region, about 80 thousand people are without electricity for more than 48 hours, a situation they are trying to solve as soon as possible.

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