Cuba's Raul Castro meets with Spanish FM in Havana

Spain's Foreign Minister Alfonso Dastis met on Wednesday with Cuban President Raul Castro in Havana during an official visit to the island.

Cuba's state daily Granma reported Castro and Dastis had discussed bilateral relations saying both sides were satisfied with developing relations which they both hoped would continue to strengthen.

Dastis is seeking to strengthen ties after the 2016 signing of the first Political Dialogue and Cooperation Agreement between Cuba and the European Union.

Spain is the country with the most joint ventures on the island and is Cuba's first trading partner in Europe. Globally it is third after China and Venezuela, respectively.

Also at the meeting were the Spanish ambassador to Cuba, Juan Jose Buitrago de Benito as well as Dastis' Cuban counterpart, Bruno Rodriguez.

Wednesday's meeting came has Hurricane Irma was thrashing its way through the northern Caribbean towards Cuba and Florida where it is expected to make landfall later this week.

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Cuban President Raul Castro Sends Message of Condolences to the King of Spain and Relatives of Victims of the Terrorist Attacks in Barcelona

The Cuban Embassy in Spain reported that president Raul Castro sent a message of condolences to King Philippe VI as well as to the relatives of the victims of the terrorist attacks in Barcelona. Such attacks left a total of 13 deaths and dozens of wounded citizens, with five Cubans among them.

Cuban ambassador in Madrid, Eugenio Martinez, also expressed his condolences before the authorities of the country.

The Embassy and its Consulate in Barcelona have been in touch with the relatives of the four Cuban injured in the terrorist attacks. A fifth Cuban was partially wounded in the Cambrils event and was immediately discharged, according to the website Cubadebate.

Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Diaz // CubaSi Translation Staff

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Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos visits Cuba

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Raul Castro denounces Donald Trump's Cuba policy

The president of Cuba has spoken publicly for the first time against US President Donald Trump's rollback of a thaw between the two countries a month ago.

President Raul Castro said "attempts to destroy the revolution" would fail.

Mr Trump has tightened restrictions on US travel to and business with the communist island.

But the US embassy in Havana, re-opened by former President Barack Obama, is still operating.

Mr Castro was speaking in front of Cuba's national assembly. It was his first public comment on the policy changes Mr Trump announced a month ago.

State-run Cuban media quoted Mr Castro as saying that Mr Trump was using "old and hostile rhetoric" and had returned to "confrontation that roundly failed over 55 years".

He said: "We reject the manipulation of the topic of human rights against Cuba, which can be proud of much in this area and does not need to receive lessons from the United States nor anyone."

Mr Trump anchored his policy rollback in human rights concerns raised by political opponents of Cuba's communist government, many of whom have fled to Miami where Mr Trump announced the changes on 16 June.

Mr Castro continued: "Cuba and the United States can cooperate and live side by side, respecting their differences. But no one should expect that for this, one should have to make concessions inherent to one's sovereignty and independence."

President of Mozambique visits Cuba

The President of Mozambique, Filipe Nyusi, makes an official visit to Cuba from Thursday to Sunday, announced today the Presidency of the Republic in a statement.

The visit comes at the invitation of the President’s Cuban counterpart, Raul Castro, with whom the Mozambican head of state will meet.

In the agenda of Filipe Nyusi is also a meeting with the Mozambican community living in Havana, a tribute to Cuban national hero José Marti and visits to economic and social enterprises.

The President of Mozambique will travel to Cuba from the United States of America where he is on an official visit.

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Ecuador's President Visits Cuba

Ecuador''s outgoing President Rafael Correa is today in the eastern city of Santiago de Cuba where he starts a two-day visit to the island during which he''ll pay tribute to late Fidel Castro and be conferred the Order Jose Marti, the country''s highest distinction.

In Santiago, the Ecuadorian Head of State, who arrived last night, is scheduled to visit Thursday Santa Ifigenia cemetery to pay homage to the historical leader of the Cuban Revolution; then, he'll be declared Illustrious Son of the City.

He is also visiting the Moncada Garrison, where the armed struggle against the Fulgencio Batista dictatorship sparked in 1953.

Correa's also scheduled to meet with local neighbors whose houses were uplifted or rebuilt by Ecuador's solidarity aid in the wake of Sandy hurricane in 2012, and talk with Ecuadorian students who are studying medicine there.

He'll be on Friday in Havana where he'll be hosted by President Raul Castro who will confer on him the Order Jose Marti, Cuba's highest award, after laying a wreath at the Memorial Jose Marti at the Revolution Square.

Rafael Correa who came to power in Ecuador in 2007 at the helm of the PAIS Alliance and led what he called the Citizens's Revolution will be honored as Doctor Honoris Causa of the University of Havana.

The outgoing leader will pass on the Presidency of Ecuador to Lenin Moreno next May 24.

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Raul Castro Presides Over May Day Parade in Havana

Cuban President Raul Castro is presiding over the main event on Workers'' International Day at Havana''s Revolution Square, where a mass parade in defense of socialism is taking place.

Government officials, historic personages, intellectuals, the diplomatic corps in Cuba and trade union leaders from several countries were invited to participate in the festivities in the tribune, built at the foot of the monument to Cuban National Hero Jose Marti.

Under the slogan 'Our Strength Is Unity', millions of Cubans have gathered nationwide to celebrate May 1 with the commitment to improving Cuba's revolutionary process and praising the value of work.

The parade is also an opportunity to demand an end to the U.S. economic, financial and commercial blockade and the devolution of the illegally-occupied territory at the Guantanamo Naval Base.

The Cuban people are also repeating their support for the Bolivarian Revolution in Venezuela against the terrorist attacks by groups financed by the right wing and their rejection of the Latin American offensive against democratic processes and leaders in the continent, the general secretary of the Cuban Workers' Confederation (CTC), Ulises Guilarte, said on Sunday.

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Cuban Parliament to Hold Ordinary Session

The National Assembly of People''s Power of Cuba (Parliament) will celebrate today in the capital''s Palacio de Convenciones the Eighth Regular Session of its Eighth Legislature.

When launching the call, on December 7th, the president of the legislative entity, Esteban Lazo, said that the call was also addressed to state bodies and agencies.

This year, the National Assembly of People's Power has four decades as the highest instance of a system of government that incorporates the Cuban population to state leadership.

This forum is composed of deputies elected by the free, direct and secret vote of electors, in proportion and according to the procedure determined by law.

Since its generalization to the entire country, after experiments of establishment and operation between the years 1974 and 1975 in the western province of Matanzas, this entity has emphasized the popular protagonism in the decision making process.

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