Russian delegation attends Havana's 500th anniversary celebrations

A delegation of the Russia-Cuba Friendship Society (SARC) is today in this capital to participate in the celebrations to mark the 500th anniversary of the founding of Havana and the 55 years of the group.

President of the Cuban Institute of Friendship with the Peoples (ICAP), Fernando González, welcomed the delegation, headed by its President, Aleksei M. Lavrov, Deputy Minister of Finance of the Russian Federation.

González highlighted the joint work between ICAP and SARC in the preparation of the 19th European Solidarity with Cuba Meeting, scheduled for July 2020 in Moscow.

For his part, Lavrov highlighted that his country has seen several festivals dedicated to the Cuban capital, and expressed satisfaction on being in Havana to celebrate its half millennium.

  • Published in Cuba

Russian market grows in Cuban tourist winter season

Russian market is strengthened in the main tourist center of sun and beach in Cuba, Varadero, and an example is the growing flow of those customers at the hotel Iberostar Tainos, of the Gran Caribe chain, which is now at 96 percent occupancy, in the early days of the so-called high season of tourism.

Odesys Ponce, commercial specialist of the facility, told ACN that although the main issuing country of the resort continues being Canada, Russia currently emerges as a strong potential, from direct flights Moscow-Varadero by Juan Gualberto Gomez international airport.

They are mainly friend groups, families who come to enjoy their long holidays in a hotel that is distinguished by a high sense of belonging of its workers and the quality of services.

Russians as well as English, Argentines, Belgians, Germans, Mexicans, Peruvians, Chileans and Colombians choose this destination and many of them have even returned.

Located on the first line of the beach on Carretera Las Morlas, kilometer 12.5, with a four-star category, the hotel has 272 rooms, five bars, a main restaurant and two a la carte, children's mini-club, party room and swimming pool, open-air architecture, vegetation and Environmental Beach category, and it is an ideal place for families.

The Moscow-Varadero flight was opened last August 10 and every 10 days enters the aforementioned air terminal bringing more than 490 passengers to the Hicacos peninsula; it is operated by Coral Travel, through Meeting Point, under the representation of Cubatur travel agency.

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Russia says U.S. pullout from Syria looking more like permanent occupation

Moscow, November 7 (RHC)-- The long-anticipated U.S. pullout from Syria appears to have been postponed, with Pentagon sources claiming some 800 troops will stay behind to “guard” Syria’s oil, in a mission even pro-war U.S. politicians are calling “reckless.”

In Moscow, the Russian government slammed the illegal U.S. presence in Syria amid reports of new military bases being built in a northeastern oil-rich province.

U.S. troops will occupy a large area stretching 150 kilometers from Deir ez-Zor to al-Hasakah, the Trump administration announced earlier this week.  A total of about 800 troops will be stationed in the country, with some 600 in the Kurdish-controlled northeast plus the 200 currently garrisoned at al-Tanf in the south, anonymous administration officials told the Associated Press.

The decision appears to cancel out President Donald Trump’s promise made last month to bring home the 1,000 troops stationed in Syria, representing another triumph of the hawks in his administration over the president’s non-interventionist impulses.  Trump has repeatedly bragged “We’re keeping the oil.”

The U.S. is building two new military bases in Deir ez-Zor, according to Turkish media reports, indicating Trump is settling in for the long haul.  One base, near the town of Rmelan in al-Hasakah province, is reportedly situated near some 1,300 oil wells and fills up approximately 4 square kilometers.

Edited by Ed Newman
  • Published in World

More than 10 Russian companies take part in international trade fair opened in Havana

Russian Ambassador to Cuba Andrei Guskov and Cuban Minister of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment Rodrigo Malmierca have officially opened the Russian pavilion at the 37th Havana International Fair, FIHAV 2019, where 12 Russian companies that are already working in Cuba and planning to do so alike will present themselves.

The Russian presentation zone particularly features Electrotechnical Group Ruselprom, heavy machinery company Chetra, transport company Polar Trans, transport and logistics service operator Nordline Logistics, software development company Sphera, RM Rail Russian Carriage Works, Russian Railways, Kamaz and others.

"In the last few years, Russian companies’ presence at international fairs in Havana has expanded, which shows that our relations have only grown stronger. This development of the bilateral cooperation tells us that we will not succumb to pressure and will strengthen the relations. Isolationist policy will not be foisted on us," Russia’s trade representative to Cuba Alexander Bogatyr told TASS. "We are hoping that trade and economic cooperation between Russia and Cuba will boost life standards of Cubans."

The 37th Havana International Fair FIHAV 2019 is held on November 4-8 at the EXPOCUBA Exhibition Site. FIHAV is the largest trade and industry forum in Cuba and in the Caribbean, as well as boasts one of the biggest number of participants in Latin America. The fair has been held since 1983 in association with the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment and the Chamber of Commerce.

This year, more than 4,000 companies from over 60 countries are taking part in the fair. Organizers expect up to 150,000 people to visit fair’s exhibition spaces and presentation zones. The Cuban media outlets stress that it is especially important against the backdrop of a trade, economic and financial embargo imposed on Cuba by the United States in 1962 and US President Donald Trump’s policy tightening. Cuban authorities note that holding such a large-scale event to deepen economic cooperation is yet another argument for the restrictions to be lifted.

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Cuban Film Week to be held in Russia

With the premiere next Thursday of the film 'Esteban,' a week of Cuban film will be inaugurated in the Russian capital, in which actor Blanca Rosa Blanco and the director of that feature film, Jonal Cosculluela, will be present, diplomatic sources reported.

The 91-minute drama that opens the Cuban Film Week, starring Reinaldo Guanche, Manuel Porto and Yuliet Cruz, will be part of what is already a positive tradition to open the doors to Cuba every year in this nation.

The program also includes the film 'El Regreso,' directed by Blanco and Alberto Luberta, a police saga that stars Blanco herself and Adier Fernandez, among others from the island.

In addition, Russian audiences will be able to enjoy the feature film 'Los buenos demonios' (The Good Demons), a Cuban-Spanish co-production directed by the renowned Gerardo Chijona, with Carlos Enrique Almirante, Vladimir Cruz and Enrique Molina in the leading roles.

The fourth film of the Cuban Film Week will be 'Un traductor,' a Cuban-Canadian co-production, featuring Russian actors such as Alexander Maslennikov, Guennadi Dolganov and Natalia Rodina, among others.

The feast of modern Cuban cinematography closes with the film '¿Por que lloran mis amigas?' by Magda Gonzalez, starring Edith Massola, Patricio Wood, Paula Ali and Nestor Jimenez.

  • Published in Culture

Cuban president decorates Havana's Capitol dome restorers

Cuba's President Miguel Diaz-Canel on Tuesday decorated some of the 52 workers and two Russian companies responsible for restoring the dome of the Havana Capitol building, in a ceremony at the Ibero-American Cultural Center.

During the ceremony in the center, located in the capital's library of Foreign Languages, the president handed over the Friendship Medal, awarded by decision of the State Council, and thanked the restorers for their work.

Today Havana is lighter due to the reflection of the Sun and the Moon in the golden dome restored by all of you, said the head of state in a ceremony attended by Russian personalities such as the vice president of the Duma (Lower House), Alexander Melnikov.

The ceremony was attended by the Cuban painter Yosvani Martinez, who presented his exhibition 'Loyal to Havana' in the hall of the event, which was also attended by the general secretary of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, Guennadi Ziuganov.

On the Cuban side, the event was attended by the vice president of the Council of Ministers, Ricardo Cabrisas, and the minister of Foreign Relations, Bruno Rodriguez, among other ministers and officials who accompany Diaz-Canel during his work visit to this country.

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Putin confirms visit to Cuba

Moscow, Oct 29 (Prensa Latina) Russian President Vladimir Putin said today he gladly accepts the invitation to visit Cuba, when he met his fellow Caribbean peer, Miguel Díaz-Canel, at the Novoe Ogoriovo residence, in the outskirts of this capital.

Putin congratulated Díaz-Canel for his election as president of Cuba. 'Last year you made an official visit to this country, but now you do it for the first time as head of state of the Republic of Cuba, as provided by the new Constitution,' he said.

He also said that in Russia they know well the prehistory of the links between the two countries. I would like to point out that this year you made an extended visit, I hope it was interesting and useful, said thwe Russian President.

The Russian head of state also referred to the increase in bilateral trade exchange by 33 percent last year and stressed in Russia they always viewed with special sympathy the independent position of Cuba and its sovereign policy.

  • Published in Cuba

U.S. diplomat claims Russia is behind Chile's popular uprising

A top U.S. diplomat with extensive experience in Latin America has made the surprising -- and some observers say rather bizzare -- claim that Russia is behind the massive anti-government protests in Chile.

Speaking before a congressional committee hearing on Capitol Hill, State Department diplomat Michael Kozak suggested that “foreign actors” were stoking protests in Chile.  Pressed on the statement by reporters following his testimony, Kozak elaborated further.  “We have identified on social networks false accounts that emanate from Russia, which are people who pretend to be Chilean, but in reality all the message they are doing is trying to undermine all Chilean institutions and society,” he was quoted by Chilean media.

Observers said that Kozak didn’t provide evidence, because there is no evidence of such claims.  Accusations of Russia’s social media meddling have been thrown around Washington for nearly three years now, and the best that social media ‘bot hunters’ have managed to come up with is lists of meme posting accounts that they “believe” are “potentially” Kremlin-backed, based on the claims of NATO-backed think tanks, professional ‘Russiagaters’ and Democrat intelligence officials.

Michael Kozak has a long history of interventionist actions in Latin America.  He once served as the chief of the U.S. Interests Section in Havana -- from 1996 to 1999 -- during which time the Cuban Five were arrested in the United States. 

Edited by Ed Newman

  • Published in World
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