GM Leinier Dominguez: Sestao´s second board at Spain Chess Honor Division

Cuban GM Leinier Dominguez will defend the second board of the Sestao Naturgas Energia at the Spanish teams’ chess championship to be held in Huesca, from September 26 to October 2.

The Caribbean chess player, silver medalist at the recently concluded chess Olympiad in Baku, is the third player with highest ELO rating among chess players of his team (2720), behind, Hungarian GM Richard Rapport (2752), and Azeri Teimur Radjabov (2723).

Every team is composed of 12 chess players. The Sestao line up, besides Rapport, Radjabov, and Leinier, is as follows: French GM Eduard Romain (2635), Spanish Francisco Vallejo (2718), Gm Ivan Salgado (2662), and Salvador del Rio (2516), among others.

Eight teams will liven up the tournament and it will be played in a round-robin system, seven rounds. It is mandatory to play a woman in every round.

The points scored will be given round after round (winners 2 points, draw 1 point; a loss, 0 point).

The time of the each game will be 90 minutes for first 40 moves, then 30 minutes more for the rest of the game.

Round 1 will be held at 16:30 local time on Monday September 26. Sestao will face Merida Patrimonio with GM Ernesto Inarkiev (Russia) and Rumanian GM Liviu Dieter Nisipeanu as its best chess players.

Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Diaz / Cubasi Translation Staff

  • Published in Sports

Cubans Barred From Using Spanish Bank Thanks to US Blockade

The U.S. blockade on Cuba affects the island nation's relations with the rest of the world.

The blockade imposed by the United States on Cuba is preventing a Spanish bank from providing services to the Cuban embassy in Spain, it was revealed on Saturday.

Foreign Minister Presents Report on 'Absurd' US Blockade

The crippling U.S. sanctions, imposed six decades ago, prohibits Santander Group from installing terminals in the Consulate General of Cuba in the Spanish cities of Barcelona, Seville and Santiago de Compostela.

"It is disappointing that three Cuban consulates have been deprived of receiving services from a Spanish entity to improve service to its users, under dark and unjustified U.S. unilateral decisions that negatively affect Cubans and third countries," said Eugenio Martinez Enriquez, Cuban ambassador in Spain.

According to Martinez, a Santander subsidiary in Catalonia told the Cuban consulate in Barcelona there was a difficulty in providing services for users to pay consular fees by credit cards since Elavon, the company processing the cards is a subsidiary of the U.S. company Bancorp.

The ambassador said that these three consulates in Spain "have been victims of an extraterritorial application of the biggest system of financial coercion that exists."

US Blockade on Cuba

The Santander Group is one of the largest financial entities in Spain and has thousands of branch offices around the world.

The U.S. approved a series of measures to ease travel and commerce earlier this year but still hasn’t ended the economic and financial blockade against Cuba.

Washington imposed the blockade in 1960 after the victory of the Cuban Revolution led by Fidel Castro, which overthrew the regime of Fulgencio Batista, a U.S.-backed dictator.

Cuba presented a report on Friday that claims the U.S. blockade on the island nation has cost it US$4.7 billion over the last year and US$753.7 billion over the last six decades. Last year the U.N. General Assembly voted 191-2 to condemn the U.S. blockade of Cuba, with only the U.S. and Israel opposed.

  • Published in Cuba

Spain Reports 219 Patients Infected with the Zika Virus

In Spain the number of people diagnosed with the Zika virus has increased to 219, including 37 pregnant women, according to information from the Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality.

The number of cases has increased by 26 in the last eight days. All the patients, except one, had traveled to countries affected by the disease.

The health authorities confirmed the first birth of a baby with microcephaly and other malformations in Spain on July 25th, after the mother was infected with Zika and dengue during a trip to Latin America.

Doctors at the hospital Vall d'Hebron in Barcelona stated then that the baby's mother did not want an abortion, although significant brain abnormalities in the fetus were detected in May, when she was 20 weeks pregnant.

In July, the Health Ministry also reported a case of a female infected with Zika by her partner, after he made a trip to Latin America; the first case of sexual transmission of the virus in the nation.

The autonomous region of Catalonia and Madrid have the highest number of cases, 81 and 56 respectively.

In February, Spain approved a protocol for the Zika epidemic and other diseases transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito.

  • Published in World

Thousands protest sexual assaults at Spanish festival

Thousands of people have taken to the streets of Pamplona in Spain, which hosts a famous annual festival and bull-run, to protest against the growing number of sexual assaults marring the week-long event.

The protesters, wearing the San Fermin festival’s traditional red bandanas and white t-shirts, flooded the city center carrying banners and placards that read: “No to sexual assaults”, “No to violence against women” and “no means no."

A crowd gathered at the town hall on Thursday evening holding their hands in a "stop" gesture and chanting slogans denouncing sex attacks. Public indignation had been sparked by a sexual assault on a teenager on Thursday morning.

A 19-year-old girl told police she had been sexually assaulted on one of Pamplona’s central streets by five men. The victim was subsequently taken to hospital for treatment and Police arrested the alleged attackers later on Thursday.

The city council condemned the incident and called on local residents and festival guests to join a protest against sexual violence at 21:00 local time (20:00 GMT) on Thursday.

People take part in a protest against sexual violence against women during the San Fermin festival in Pamplona, northern Spain, July 7, 2016. © Susana Vera

“We wish to express our utter rejection of any kind of attack, violence or sexist attitudes in our city and offer our support to the woman who was assaulted,” the council’s statement said, promising "to work together to eliminate sexist attacks and improve security for women in all kinds of situations."

The council had earlier launched a campaign designed to create a “safe environment” for women “without sexist aggression” during the festival, which has become infamous for the increasing number of reports of sexual assaults in recent years.

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Novel by Marta Rojas well received in Madrid

The most outstanding work by Cuban writer and journalist Marta Rojas, the novel Las campanas de Juana la Loca, received high praise during its launch at the Organization of Ibero-American States.

During the presentation of the novel in Andrés Bello Hall in the heart of Madrid, intellectual Clara Caballero speaking on behalf of CIDALIA Consulting, stated that the novel defines Marta Rojas as a leader of a new school of the Latin American novel, the “Benito Pérez Galdós” of Cuba, whose non-linear structure takes on a similar style to that of Galdós.

Participants also highlighted the revival of the figure of the cigar factory reader, declared cultural heritage of the nation due to the importance of this tradition in Cuban culture.

This individual is responsible for reading the news, novels, stories, poetry, and fables to keep workers entertained as they roll cigars.

  • Published in Culture

At Least 4 Injured in 1st Day of Pamplona's Sanfermines Running of the Bulls

MADRID, Spain - At least four people were injured on Thursday in the first San Fermin running of the bulls that featured wet streets, many falls, and some very tense moments.

Around 2000 participants ('mozos') sprinted down the 875 meter course in front of six charging bulls and six tamed bulls that weighed between 510 and 630 kilograms (1120 and 1390 pounds).

Several were injured when the bulls did not notice a slight curve to the left and charged straight ahead into a dozen mozos who had fallen to the ground and were disorientated and trying to get to their feet.

The heavy rains that lasted until an hour before the run made the streets traitorously slippery and caused many falls from the moment the starting rocket was fired.

The run itself was quick and smooth, lasting 2 minutes 28 seconds, and was spearheaded by a group of four bulls that sped ahead of the rest, splitting the herd in two which always makes the run more dangerous and exciting, though this time there were no negative consequences.

The bulls' speed combined with the large crowds and wet and narrow streets made it difficult for mozos to stay out of the beasts' way, though only four mozos needed to be transferred to a hospital with traumas.

One mozo made a grave mistake when, after falling right in front of a bull, he immediately tried to get back up instead of staying still on the ground, which placed him right in front of bull's horns.

Despite the many distractions in the form of falls, crowds, and a man running in his underwear, the bulls did not spare the slightest threatening glance at mozos, preferring to keep their heads low and storm ahead.

The run began with mozos singing to Saint Fermin and ended at the Monumental bullring, where the bulls will face matadors in a traditional fight Thursday afternoon.

The festivities will continue until July 14, and will feature daily bull runs and bullfights.

  • Published in Culture

Cuban Cinema in Spain

A cycle dedicated to Cuban documentary movement related to the Revolution started to be shown from Thursday in Madrid’s Reina Sofia Museum, where films by Santiago Alvarez, Sara Gomez and Manuel Octavio Gómez—along with others—will recall events that influenced world cinema grouped under the themes of Batallas, Tercer mundo, Perspectivas I, Perspectivas II, Perspectivas III, Largas luchas, Ajenos and Lente ancha.

The exhibition dedicated to Cuban filmmaker Julio García Espinosa (1926-2016) had the collaboration of the Cinematheque of Cuba, and will coincide with the retrospective exhibition this Spanish museum dedicates to artist Wifredo Lam.

The films will be Historia de una batalla (1962), Cerro Pelado (1966), Hanoi, martes 13 (1967), Una isla para Miguel (1968), 79 primaveras (1969), ¡Viva la República! (1972) and Giron (1972). In the meantime, Cuba, pueblo armado (1961), by Dutch Joris Ivens, and Hombres de Mal Tiempo (1968), by Argentine Alejandro Saderman are included equally in the cycle since the work of these two filmmakers is part of documentary Cuba.

The cycle will run until July 9.

Translation: Cubarte

  • Published in Culture
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