Cuban rapper Telmary Díaz raises her voice next to other Cuban and Canadian residents who were mobilized this Sunday in the cities of Toronto and Montreal against the decision of Justin Trudeau’s government of terminating the visa procedures at the embassy of this country in Havana.
For whom Cuba is its best source of inspiration and has lived for several years, for working matters, between Canada and this wonderful island, the closing of the Canadian immigration services in Cuba has seemed absurd.
As a journalist asked her why she was there, she said: «I am representing the Cuban people that live here, in Toronto, and right now these measures affect us all, both the Cuban artists and the families who live here that are part of Toronto’s community. It’s unfair that the Canadian consulate is closed. Imagine a grandpa traveling to a third country to look for a visa to visit his relatives. It’s really a harsh measure, but, it’s also outraging, when Cuba is one of the countries that welcomes 1.5 millions of Canadians a year, as well as one of the safest places for them we are certain of that, because we have had the opportunity to share with them. It bothers me that it’s not reciprocal. That’s why we are here and I know that the number of people will increase; there are people who are writing to us and signatures are being gathered. The Canadian and the Cuban people will get united and everybody else who is trying to turn this situation around. Here we are raising the voice representing Cuba».
There are not doubts that Telmary has also become a cultural ambassador for Cuba to the world. For her: «Cubans have an incredible strength. I believe there isn’t anything better in the world than to be Cuban. That’s why I defend my roots. I travel the world trying to show people what it really means to be Cuban», she said a few years ago in Toronto, where she stayed for a musical contract.
For Julio Fonseca, chairman at the Association of Cuban Residents in Toronto Juan Gualberto Gómez, group that organized the manifestation that took place outside the offices of the chancellor of Canada, Chrystia Freeland, is «a sad measure; such position won't help the relationship between both countries and peoples, and it will undoubtedly affect the cultural, economic, political, academic and sport exchanges, just to mention some sectors», as reported Prensa Latina.
On the other hand, the Cuban ambassador in Canada, Josefina Vidal, made public several days ago the official complain of the island to the authorities of that country for the closing of the Canadian immigration services in Cuba.
Back then, Vidal had declared that the alleged reason of the measure was the mysterious illnesses suffered by several Canadian diplomats working in Cuba since 2017 and that were initially attributed to «acoustic attacks».
On the consequences of these closings in the embassy, the diplomat highlighted that Cubans have to travel twice, at a high cost, to a Canadian embassy in another country, Mexico, for example, to obtain a Canadian visa. This measure affects hundreds of people including the Canadians with their children who have a Cuban relative in the family.
As proven, it’s regrettably that Canada imitates the North American pattern in which the current president, Donald Trump, forces Cubans who want a visa to the U.S. to visit their embassy in a third country, for example, Colombia.
Also, the Cuban chancellor, Bruno Rodríguez, carried out this Friday a work visit to Canada to meet his counterpart, Chrystia Freeland.
In the talks, Rodríguez expressed the concern for the termination of the grant of visas to Cuban citizens in Havana, which—he said to Prensa Latina—is already affecting the exchanges in different fields of the bilateral relationship, and it particularly damages the Cuban, Canadian and mixed families.
With information from Prensa Latina