Published on 13 May 2015 by Granma

bloqueoOn April 14, President Barack Obama notified the U.S. Congress of his decision to remove Cuba from the list of state sponsors of terrorism. From that date, the government must allow a period of 45 days for Congressional and public comment, before Cuba’s removal from the list becomes effective.

Two weeks ago, Cuban-born Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (Republican-Florida) introduced a bill in the House of Representatives to reverse the President’s decision. However, her efforts met with resounding failure, and she was forced to withdraw the bill. In doing so, she misleadingly claimed there were no legislative mechanisms which allow for the repeal of the de-listing of Cuba, which is not true, as Congress has the necessary procedures to maintain the designation of a country as a state sponsor of terrorism.

The reality is that the anti-Cuban Congresswoman failed to garner the required support, even among members of the Republican Party, which currently holds the majority in both houses of Congress, to pass a law that would override Obama’s decision and survive a possible presidential veto.

This means that once the 45 days established by law have passed, on May 29, the inclusion of Cuba as a terrorist state will end.


This constitutes an act of historical justice for the Cuban people.

For 33 years the U.S. government unjustifiably kept our country on an ignominious list, on which it never should have been included, as a country that was victim to hundreds of terrorist acts which killed 3,478 people and incapacitated 2,099 Cuban citizens. Cuba has always condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, as well as any action that seeks to provide encouragement, support, financing and concealment of acts of this nature. As a sign of its international commitment, the Cuban state has ratified all conventions and protocols on combating terrorism promoted by the United Nations.

A positive outcome of the presidential decision on Cuba in the legal field, will be the eradication of the possibility of further spurious claims against the Cuban government, as filed in the past by unscrupulous people who, protected by U.S. anti-terrorism laws and with the complicity of courts, especially in Miami, won compensatory damages that allowed them to seize assets frozen in the United States belonging to Cuban state entities, by virtue of our designation as a sponsor of terrorism.

However, the definitive exclusion from this list does not imply any relief from the economic, commercial and financial blockade against Cuba. This is because most of the laws and regulations which established the blockade policy were approved before 1982, when Cuba was declared a state sponsor of terrorism. The sanctions and restrictions that this designation implies were therefore already in place as part of the blockade.

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cuba nepal doc

More than 8,000 people have died as a consequence of the earthquake that struck Nepal on 25 April 2015. Over 16,000 people have been injured and hundreds-of-thousands left homeless. Those figures will rise further in the coming days as substantial damage and destruction – inflicted on an already insufficient healthcare system – has meant hospitals are turning patients away due to lack of supplies or capacity. In the capital, Kathmandu, with a population of over one million, the city’s maternity hospital has just 150 beds available due to partial destruction. The response of the so-called ‘international community’ has been typical. Whilst aid agencies such as the Red Cross and Médecins Sans Frontières have deployed much-needed emergency workers, few governments have gone further than pledges of money, food or supplies by committing to provision of the necessary medical aid.

It is in this context that in the early morning of Friday 8 May a team of forty-nine Cubans, part of the prestigious Henry Reeve International Brigade (a ten-thousand-strong band of Cuban health professionals specialising in disaster response) departed for Nepal. On arrival the team will establish a field hospital equipped with surgery and intensive care units, diagnostics, consultation areas and recovery services – all provided by Cuba’s socialist government. From the moment the disaster struck, the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs investigated the unfolding situation and began to make the necessary preparations for an effective, long-term medical intervention.

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Published on 6 May 2015 by Granma Internacional

mariela

The 8th Cuban Day against Homophobia and Transphobia began this Tuesday with a press conference and the inauguration of the photo exhibition Continuing Forward by U.S. artist Byron Motley at the National Center for Sex Education (Ce­nesex) headquarters, which along with the Cuban Workers’ Federation has organized an extensive program of activities, which will continue through May 23 across the provinces of Havana and Las Tunas.

Mariela Castro Espín, director of Cene­sex, highlighted the importance of informing and educating the Cuban population in the need to accept and respect free and responsible sexual orientation and gender identity, rights which when not respected by all, become a problem which generates suffering and exclusion.

In this regard she noted that this year Cenesex has launched a new campaign as part of its ongoing communicative and sex education strategy, which aims to promote, under the banner of “count me in,” homophobia or transphobia free work spaces.

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2 May 2015 by Juventud Rebelde written by Enrique Milanes Leon 

Translation by Rock Around the Blockade. Edited by Walter Lippmann. 

A young communist from Britain, coordinator of the Cuba Vive solidarity brigade, talks to JR about the struggle ‘in the belly of the beast’ and confesses her admiration for the island that gives hope, even in her country.

To overcome the 7,493 kilometres that separate London from Havana, for the third time,  young Samantha Cordery had to make sacrifices. She even participated in a 25,000 metre race looking for sponsors who would understand that she was a special competitor, collecting donations because her real "goal" was much further away, in Cuba.  

Samantha explains about the newspaper "Fight Racism, Fight Imperialism". Photo: Calixto N. Llanes

 

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April 24, 2015 by Granma

 

Author: Lino Luben Pérez/AIN

 

The Cuban medication Itolizumab, a humanized monoclonal antibody for the treatment of severe psoriasis, was awarded a Gold Medal by the World Intellectual Property Organization. Vice President Miguel Díaz-Canel attended the ceremony held at Havana’s José Martí Memorial.

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) awarded its Gold Medal to the Cuban medication Itolizumab, in a ceremony attended by Vice President of the Councils of State and Ministers Miguel Díaz-Canel, held at Havana’s José Martí Memorial.

The humanized monoclonal antibody was developed in Cuba for the treatment of chronic inflammatory autoimmune diseases such as psoriasis, which affects some 125 million people worldwide, according to María de los Ángeles Sánchez Torres, director of the country’s Industrial Property Office.

The medication is being used in Cuba, as well as China and India, via a joint production company.

Nuno Pires de Carvalho, acting director of Intellectual Property and Competition Policy Division within the WIPO presented the award to Dr. Kalet León Monzón, deputy director for research and development at the Molecular Immunology Center, who accepted the honor in the name of its five principal inventors.

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is one of the United Nations’ 17 specialized agencies.

29 April 2015 by Cuba News

HAVANA, Cuba, Apr 29 (acn) In Cuba there are more than two million people over 60 years of age, 19 percent of the total population, and is the first Latin American country with the oldest population, announced an expert in this capital on Tuesday.

Doctor Alberto Fernandez, head of the National Group for the Care of the Elderly, of the Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP) told ACN in an exclusive interview that the rapid population aging is largely due to the low birth rate, the increase of life expectancy and social development.

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Published on April 21 2015, Granma
Author: Livia Rodriguez Delis

Some 88.3% of eligible voters cast ballots during the first round of mid-term elections, on April 19, to select delegates to Municipal Assemblies of People’s Power.

Photo: Juvenal Balán

This April 19, Cubans participated in another historic event reflective of the times. More than 7.5 million voters, 88.3% of eligible voters, exercised their right to vote to reaffirm their commitment to the future of the Revolution, on a day when the country also celebrated the 54th anniversary of Cuba’s victory over the U.S. backed invasion at Playa Girón, on the Bay of Pigs.

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Published on 14 April 2015 by teleSUR English

150409 CubaRemoval

U.S. President Barack Obama said Tuesday that he intends to remove Cuba from the list of state sponsors of terrorism list. In a brief statement, the White House said it no longer considers Havana a state sponsor of terrorism. “The Government of Cuba has not provided any support for international terrorism during the preceding 6-month period; and ... the Government of Cuba has provided assurances that it will not support acts of international terrorism in the future,” the statement reads.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest commented that Obama's decision is in line with U.S. “interests and values.” “We will continue to have differences with the Cuban government, but our concerns over a wide range of Cuba’s policies and actions fall outside the criteria that is relevant to whether to rescind Cuba’s designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism,” he said.

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Published on 2 April 2015 by ACN

madre hijo

Experts of the Pan-American and World Health organizations praised the results of the program of eastern Santiago de Cuba province to prevent and eliminate the mother-child transmission of HIV/AIDS and syphilis.

Doctor Maria Dolores Mafran, responsible of the Department for Prevention and Control of Infections by Sexually Transmitted Diseases/HIV-AIDS in the territory, told ACN that the specialists visited health centers as part of actions to validate the vertical elimination of these diseases in Cuba.

Likewise, she pointed out, they showed interest in the structures of these centers, at the level of doctor's offices, in which they verified prenatal care from Primary Health Care, serology for syphilis and HIV in pregnant women's registers, and the experience of the staff in communities.

Exchanges with civil society were significant, underlined Mafran, represented in members of the Federation of Cuban Women, the Committees for the Defense of the Revolution, transsexual and homosexual persons living with HIV, and in the project of youngsters and adolescents promoting health care.

Mafran conveyed the opinion of Adele Benzaken, co-president of the Regional Committee of Experts that visited the country, who, during her visit to Santiago de Cuba expressed that the assessment was yet another opportunity to know more about eh island's public health system, in addition to the hospitality, transparence and dedication to work of specialized staff. The verification exercise was also carried out in the provinces of Havana and Villa Clara, and results will be presented in Geneva, headquarters of the WHO.

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