Latin American Forum Denounces Twitter for Censoring Cubans

The Communications Forum for the Integration of Our America (FCINA) today described the suspension of accounts in Cuba by private social network Twitter as a case of restriction of freedom of expression.

In a communiqué, the organization noted that on Wednesday, dozens of Twitter accounts belonging to Cuban institutions, media and intellectuals were suspended.

'Although some of them were partially restored, the simultaneity and extent of the suspensions speak of a deliberate corporate action against Cuban media and personalities who criticize capitalism and the political and cultural neocolonialism that the United States intends to impose on Latin America and the Caribbean,' the statement read.

The Forum denounced this politically motivated action aimed at restricting the dissemination of the truth about Cuba from its leading actors.

The Forum noted that the incident on Wednesday proved, as has been pointed out before, 'the true face of corporate social networks, which take advantage of their monopoly situation to exercise arbitrary censorship.'

FCINA expressed full solidarity with the organizations and people affected, in particular with the Cuban chapter of the Network of Intellectuals and Artists in Defense of Humanity, which is an active member of the Forum.

The organization also declared the firm commitment to the principles of a free and open Internet, of universal access, without corporate dominance and with decisive citizen influence on its governance.

  • Published in World

Diaz-Canel: Cuba is not paralyzed

Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel thanked the Cuban people for its support and trust. He stated “there are difficulties, but there is no need to panic.”

Cuba woke up today intense, active, perhaps with less transportation. But it is not paralyzed. “Solidarity is multiplied,” highlighted the President of the Council of States and Ministers Miguel Diaz-Canel Bermudez when referring to the temporary oil shortage the nation is facing these days.

In the second information TV program Mesa Redonda (Round Table) addressing this issue and broadcasted live Thursday night from the Revolution Palace, the also member of the Political Bureau spoke highly on the Cuban people as a sign of gratitude:

“Amid this tough situation, we have seen many indications of revolutionary feelings, support, understanding, and new ideas. And all of them are much more important than any supertanker. It shows the greatness and huge values of the people,” he stated.

He, particularly, thanked the young people, especially those who contribute with new ideas and proposals. “That’s how we think as a nation. It is to put Cuba first,” he pointed out.

He also congratulated the work of Cuban mass media.

By assessing the citizens’ mood and opinions, he noted that “there are difficulties and we will detail them all. But there is no need to panic as we are ready to face each of them. These difficulties are temporary and they are identified. None of them are the result of negligence and improvisation.”

Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Diaz/CubaSi Translation Staff

Shortage of diesel will not stagnate Cuba, Gov't asserts

Despite hurting the steel and cement industries, two big fuel consumers, the shortage of diesel caused by hardened US hostility, Cuba will not stagnate, Economy Minister Alejandro Gil assured the nation in a televised appearance.

Gil spoke at the second special news analysis Roundtable from the Palace of Government which was headed by President Miguel Diaz-Canel.

The Trump administration has been exerting mounting pressure, including intimidation and threats, on shipping companies to keep them from transporting oil to Cuba. This caused a supply shortage during August which is being felt in September.

The Cuban Government has been forced to take a few measures to save the existing fuel the country still has before a big tanker docks on Sunday.

One of the measures is to stop steel and cement productions until the fuel supply normalizes, Minister Gil explained, adding the available resources will be used to guarantee the production of foodstuffs, retail sales and meeting the tourist demand.

After reiterating this is a temporary situation, President Diaz-Canel thanked the nation for its understanding and support after the measures were announced on Wednesday evening.

He highlighed as valuable the concerns, suggetions and comments made by common citizens, particularly young people, in search of solutions to face up the effects of the diesel shortage.

Prensa Latina noticed that during Thursday three types of gasoline were available at service stations in Havana, but not diesel which is being reserved for key sectors.

Energy and Mines Minister Raul Garcia asserted the State is carefully using the existing fuel to avoid having the bothersome blackouts. So far, he asserted energy is guaranteed, though he called on the people to save power.

He mentioned that power stations are operating with the fuel oil and gas produced in Cuba and the contribution of the 67 solar farms operating on the island that supply 2.4 percent of the energy needed daily.

On transportation, one sector seriously affected by the diesel shortage, Minister Eduardo Rodriguez said seaport and airport operations are being guaranteed, while train and bus service is reshuffled to provide the best service possible.

  • Published in Cuba

Canada finds goals hard to come by in CONCACAF Nations League rematch with Cuba

Canada survived heat, a hard pitch and a physical Cuba side in a 1-0 win in CONCACAF Nations League A play Tuesday, just three days after running roughshod over the Cubans in Toronto.

Canada dominated play but needed a ninth-minute Alphonso Davies goal for the win.

Despite losing centre back Doneil Henry to a second yellow card in the 55th minute, the Canadian men had 82 per cent possession at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex and completed 696 passes to the Cubans’ 93.

Canada only managed six shots, the same as Cuba, and only put one on target.

“It was a tough game. The surface was not the best but I think we fought hard,” said Davies. “We’re happy to get the three points.”

“This is football. You have to grind a result. It’s not always pretty,” he added

Davies, who had a fine game despite absorbing plenty of punishment from the Cubans, scored with a powerful left-footed blast from just inside the penalty box after a Cuban turnover at midfield. It was the Bayern Munich teenager’s fourth goal in 15 national team appearances.

“He wouldn’t be at Bayern if he didn’t have that quality,” said goalkeeper Milan Borjan, who captained Canada for the first time. “The kid is just amazing. He’s a wunderkind.”

Playing at a neutral site, a revamped Canadian roster found itself dealing with a Cuban side that was decidedly more stubborn and physical despite reportedly losing players to defection on the trip to Canada.

The Cubans chopped down Canadians as needed and Guatemalan referee Mario Escobar content to let them play.

Canada, ranked 78th in the world, thumped No. 179 Cuba 6-0 on Saturday at BMO Field with captain Junior Hoilett recording a hat trick and Jonathan David, Jonathan Osorio and Henry also scoring.

The Canadian men had beaten Cuba 7-0 in group play at the Gold Cup in June.

“We knew on this pitch and (with) the conditions, the goals weren’t going to be as flowing,” said Canada coach John Herdman.

“But I was really happy with how the players responded,” he added. “I think we controlled the game, even down to 10 men.”

Tuesday’s game was shifted to the Cayman Islands capital when the stadium in Havana did not pass CONCACAF scrutiny.

While Canada controlled Tuesday’s game, the Cubans were more disciplined in defence — sitting deep with two lines of four and content with the occasional counter-attack by forward Maykel Reyes, who had a stint with Mexico’s Cruz Azul in 2018.

Canada had 72 per cent possession in the first half but only put one shot on target. The Cubans had one first-half scoring chance but the ball hit the side of the goal.

The Canadians wanted a penalty for handball in the 46th minute but didn’t get it. Herdman introduced Osorio in the 52nd minute in a bid to help open up the Cubans.

With Henry off the field, Herdman brought on centre back Derek Cornelius and removed striker Cycle Larin in the 60th minute. Liam Millar replaced Davies in the 79th minute.

Canada’s career record against Cuba stands at 9-2-3 with a 27-9 edge in goals.

  • Published in Sports

Cuba Sends Humanitarian Aid to the Bahamas

The first shipment of humanitarian aid sent by Cuba to the Bahamas, an archipelago severely damaged by category 5 Hurricane Dorian last week, was received by Captain Stephen Russell, director of the National Emergency Management Agency of that nation.

Eugenio Martínez Enríquez, director general for Latin America and the Caribbean of Cuba’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, posted on Twitter that “the first part of #Cuba’s humanitarian aid arrived in Bahamas. It was received by Captain Stephen Russell, @nemabahamas Government of #Bahamas thanks the
Government and people of #Cuba.

On the Cuban side the shipment was delivered by Raciel Proenza, deputy director general of Economic Cooperation of the Ministry of Foreign Trade (MINCEX) and Ambassador of Cuba Ismara Vargas.

Proenza told Prensa Latina news agency that in the next few days another Cuban vessel with new supplies will arrive in the Bahamas. Likewise, the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated in its Twitter profile that “after the passage of #HuracanDorian, permanent communication has been maintained between the authorities of #Cuba and #Bahamas, to coordinate the aid offered by #Cuba.

Our collaborators have joined the recovery efforts in the brotherly Caribbean country. More than 60 of these aid workers are in the Bahamas, most of them in the educational sector, and according to press reports all of them are in good health and in full dedication to the tasks of repairing the damages and recovering as much as possible in that archipelago, where Dorian hit last September 1 as a category 5 hurricane, leaving at least 50 dead, more than 2,500 missing and billions of dollars in damages.

  • Published in Cuba

Twitter suspends Granma’s account and those of other Cuban media

Yesterday, just as Granma began special coverage of the Presidents television appearance, for our 16,000 followers, Twitter suspended Granma’s account and those of other Cuban media.

The suspension notification does not state the reason why the @Granma_Digital account was disabled, and although efforts have been made to reactivate it, no action has been successful. Editors and administrators of various media in Cuba, such as Cubadebate, Mesa Redonda, the Caribe television broadcaster, and Radio Rebelde, have also reported on Facebook and other channels, the suspension of their Twitter accounts without cause.

  • Published in Cuba

Why is Cuba in a better position, compared with the “Special Period,” to face present challenges?

Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel Bermudez detailed on Wednesday in a special TV appearance the strengths of the island to overcome the ongoing economic adversities, derive from the aggressive policy of the United States, especially under Donald Trump’s administration, and refuted the idea we are experiencing another Special Period in times of peace.

To face such difficult conditions “we have an economic and social development strategy adopted in the last two Party Congresses,” a conceptualized economic and social model to which we aspire and defend. The foundations are laid to elaborate an economic and social development plan until 2030 and keep moving forward long term.

According to the Cuban President, we are in much better conditions since:

- We approved a new Constitution, which is being implemented already.

- The vast majority of the population support and trust the leaders of our Communist Party.

- Cuba produces 40% of its oil consumption, nonexistent in the Special Period in times of peace and guarantees that our power plants —fundamental core of our electricity generation— can work properly.

- The development attained by tourism, exceeding the 70 thousand rooms despite the blockade, which ensures significant income in convertible currencies.

-We have the export of services, an example of it is the health sector.

-Foreign investment has grown as a dynamic factor in our economy, especially in nickel, in oil, in mining, in tourism, at Mariel Special Development Zone, in the food and the tobacco industry.

-Despite the worsening of the blockade, the main investors in the island have remained.

-An economy which is more present in the international market, where the development tourism and the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry are strengths.

-The country now has greater construction capabilities, in hydraulic networks, transportation, and communications. There are also the infrastructure and reserves we have in storage and import substitution.

-Cuba has diversified its economic, commercial and financial relations, with Venezuela, Russia, China, Vietnam, as well as with the European Union, with the entire area of ​​Latin America and the Caribbean, with countries in Africa...

-We have private businesses as complement to state activity, this sector has grown strong.

"Cuba is far from being isolated, we are indeed a country that the world sees with awe and respect," said Diaz-Canel.

CubaSí Translation Staff

Public transportation in Cuba to be reorganized to face diesel shortages

Eduardo Rodriguez Davila, Minister of Transport, announced that public passenger transport will be reorganized throughout the country in order to palliate the short-term lack of diesel Cuba is facing these days due to the US blockade.

Among the priorities in that Ministry are the use of rail transportation, given its high energy efficiency, and ensure the distribution of fuel, food and other inputs, to reduce to a minimum the affectation to the people.

In the midst of the complex situation in which it will not be possible to maintain the usual level of activity, it was oriented to ensure port and airport operations, the distribution of products from the standard family basket, support health care services such as hemodialysis and maintain communications with the Special Municipality of the Isle of Youth.

He said it will also be necessary to readjust the departures of the national trains, not cancel them, because due to the lack of diesel fuel will be necessary to extend them in time even if people cannot travel on the scheduled day, in such cases those who wish can receive a reimbursement or postpone the reservation.

Maintaining only one daily trip by bus between Havana and the rest of the provincial capitals is another of the measures adopted by the Ministry of Transport in a circumstantial way, stressed the Minister, and before the cancellations of trips will respect the right of passengers affected to reimburse them, or book for another time.

Rodriguez Davila said in the Special Roundtable that the public service schemes of urban buses will be redesigned, for the sake of better performance in peak times.

We are going to implement a system of inspectors and cadres that will be at the points of greatest concentration of passengers ensuring that drivers of state vehicles pick up people at stops, and in the case of trucks and other means of cargo that do not circulate empty in cities and towns, said the Minister.

In addition to intensifying these controls, for the sake of more efficient use of the means of transportation of the State, the minister said that they will work with private carriers to help alleviate this critical situation, along with cooperatives in the sector, of taxis.

An issue of great importance at times like this, timely and systematic information to the population, is also among the priorities of the Ministry, he said. (ACN)

  • Published in Cuba
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