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News on Cuba - August 10, 2012 Print E-mail

Wife of Cuban Antiterrorist to Regional Conference in Tijuana

HAVANA, Cuba, Aug 10 (ACN) Rosa Aurora Freijanes, wife of Cuban antiterrorist fighter Fernando Gonzalez, who is held in a US prison, will participate at the US-Mexico-Latin American Conference that will take place August 15-19, in the city of Tijuana, Lower California.

This year the Conference also invited US activist Cindy Sheehan, who has openly supported the cause of the five Cubans, who have been serving long sentences in the United States.

Since 2007, the International Committee for the Freedom of the Cuban Five introduced their cause as a subject on the agenda of the conference in an effort to spread the truth about the case of Fernando Gonzalez, Ramon Labañino, Gerardo Hernandez, Antonio Guerrero and Rene Gonzalez.

“We are expecting the attendance of delegates from different places, since Tijuana is a strategic territory on the US-Mexican border,” Elvira Garcia, member of the committee in Lower California told PL news agency.

Freijanes will tell the audience about the actions being taken in demand of the return to Cuba of the five anti-terrorist fighters, who were arrested in 1998 and submitted to a Miami trial in 2001 that gave them unfair sentences, after they monitored US-based ultra-right organizations that have committed terrorist acts against Cuba over the past fifty years.


Bolivia Presents a Book about Jose Marti's Family

La Paz, Aug 9 (Prensa Latina) Cuban writer Froilan Gonzalez launched at this capital's Book Fair the title "Creciente Agonia" (Increasing Agony), an approach to the family life of Cuba's national hero Jose Marti.

The text, in which his wife Adys Cupull is also co-author, collects some moments of the life of Marti's parents and the agony of a Spanish-origin family, faithful to the crown, with a son who dreamed since he was a child with the freedom of the country where he was born on January 28, 1853.

Author, together with Cupull, from over 30 titles about the life of prominent figures of Cuba's history, Gonzalez outlined some aspects of family life, and the positions between Marti and his father, Don Mariano, who was then military and police in some of Havana neighborhoods.

The writer also referred to the transformation of Marti's father, when he saw his son working in the quarries of San Lazaro, where he was imprisoned for his ideas about Cuba's freedom.

Gonzalez, who was Cuba's consul general in Bolivia in the 80's of the last century, also emphasized his interest in the life of Argentinian-Cuban guerrilla fighter Ernesto Che Guevara, on which he has published many books, some of them translated into many languages.


CELAC and China Hold First Meeting to Strengthen Relations

Beijing, Aug 10 (Prensa Latina) The Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and China had their first formal conversations to foster bilateral relations today, with the Chinese delegation advocating long term cooperative connections.

Ideas and criteria for developing these connections were discussed in a meeting between Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi and his counterparts Alfredo Moreno (Chile), Nicolas Maduro (Venezuela) and the Foreign Vice Minister of Cuba, Rogelio Sierra.

"We believe this regional organization is very important," said Yang at the start of the meeting, adding that he felt the meeting would lead to "important results."

Moreno recognized the role of China in the world, and said that its economic and commercial influence has allowed millions of people to defend themselves from the effects of the economic crisis.

These contacts come shortly after the proposal from Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao to create a cooperation forum with Latin America and the Caribbean and the establishment of an interactive dialogue with CELAC.

The program of the CELAC representatives included conversations with the Vice President of the Chinese National Popular Assembly, Jiang Shusheng and a meeting with the ambassadors and diplomats from different Latin American and Caribbean countries in China.

The delegation visited New Delhi, India, where they agreed to formalize relations through annual meetings and exchanges in order to increase the trade and investments.


Cuban Tourism Shows Favorable Results in 2012 First Semester

Havana, Aug 10 (Prensa Latina) Cuban tourism sector reflects today favorable results in the evolution of its main indicators, with increases in arrivals, overnight stays, hotel occupancy and revenues, official sources reported.

According to the National Statistics Office, from January to June, the average occupancy rate was 55.6 percent, with an inter-annual increase of 4.3 percent.

Overnight stays also grew by 7.6 percent, while revenue showed a rise of 9.7 percent, to exceed $1,100 billion USD in the period.

This latter indicator highlights the contribution of food service with about 415 million dollars and an increase of 6.6 percent.

However, the biggest gain, 15.5 percent, was to income from property, totaling $338 million USD.

Turism is one of Cuban´s most dynamic elements of economy, with aspirations to receive about three million visitors by late 2012


Retroactive Punishment: US Citizen Fined $6.500 for 1998 Trip to Cuba

HAVANA, Cuba, Aug 9 (ACN) New Yorker Sachary Sanders was imposed a $6.500 fine for a trip he made to Cuba 14 years ago, under US treasury regulations in tune with Washington’s over 50 blockade of the island.

Sanders, who is now 38, was 23 when he travelled to the island from Mexico where he was living and working as an English teacher, NBC reported.

After leaving the island, where he travelled without a US license in 1998, Sanders returned to the US through the Bahamas and a customs officer seized an undeclared box of Cuban cigars from his luggage. This was the beginning of a process that that ended up with the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) imposing the fine.

As part of the over-50-year US economic, financial and commercial blockade of Cuba, US citizens are banned from freely traveling to Cuba if they are not granted a license by the Treasury.


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