News on Cuba - January 12, 2012 Print

Iran's President Ends Cuba Visit

Havana, Jan 12 (Prensa Latina) Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Thursday concluded his official visit to Cuba, from where he departed to Ecuador, to end his Latin American tour that also took him to Venezuela and Nicaragua.

Ahmadinejad, who also met with the leader of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro, told the press that relations between Cuba and Iran are excellent.

The Iranian president was bid farewell in this capital by his counterpart Raul Castro, with whom he on Wednesday night exchanged views on the excellent state of bilateral relations and talked about different international issues.

They ratified the commitment of both countries with the defense of peace, international law, and the principles of the United Nations Charter, and the right of all States to the peaceful use of nuclear energy.

They also reaffirmed their position with regard to the application of unilateral economic laws.


Cuban and Iranian Presidents Meet

Havana, Jan 12 (Prensa Latina) President Raul Castro received his Iranian counterpart Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who is on an official visit to Cuba. During the meeting, the two statesmen exchanged views on the excellent state of bilateral relations, and talked about different international issues.

They ratified the commitment of both countries with the defense of peace, international law, and the principles of the United Nations Charter, and the right of all States to the peaceful use of nuclear energy.

They also reaffirmed their position with regard to the application of unilateral economic laws, Granma newspaper reported.

Foreign Ministers Ali Akbar Salehi, of Iran, and Bruno Rodriguez, of Cuba, also attended the meeting.


Ahmadinejad Awarded Honoris Causa, Vows to Be Good Student

Havana, Jan 12 (Prensa Latina) President of Iran Mahmud Ahmadinejad vowed to be a good student after been awarded the Honoris Causa degree in Political Sciences at the University of Havana.

At the start of his state visit to Cuba, on the third stop of his Latin American tour also including Venezuela, Nicaragua and Ecuador, Ahmadinejad said he would be no more than a student among professors and intellectuals of the high education center.

"My presence here implies the existence of solidarity and the strengthening of relations between two revolutionary peoples," he said in the presence of Cuban Vice President Esteban Lazo.

"I am very grateful of God Almighty, who has given me the opportunity to be here with friends; my deepest appreciation for granting me the Honoris Causa degree," he said in a little over 35-minute masterly conference.

The Honoris Causa degree was awarded to Ahmadinejad in recognition of his efforts to boost relations with Cuba and Latin America, besides the defense of his country's right to self-determination against foreign aggressions and the struggle for a more just international order.

According to his agenda, Ahmadinejad is also scheduled to meet with his counterpart Raul Castro and lay a wreath at the monument of Jose Marti at the Revolution Square.


Free The Five Committee Active in Luxembourg

Luxembourg, Jan 11 (Prensa Latina) The Free The Five Committee of Luxembourg reiterated its determination to step up efforts to achieve the return to Cuba of the five anti-terrorist Cuban fighters unfairly held in US prisons.

In an article published by Zaitung vum Ltzebuerger Vollek, the organization denounced the arbitrariness in the trial against Rene Gonzalez, Antonio Guerrero, Ramon Labanino, Gerardo Hernandez and Fernando Gonzalez, who were arrested more than 13 years ago for gathering information about terrorist actions against Cuba planned by Miami-based groups.

The article was written by the president of the committee, journalist Ivano Iogna, under the title "4,865 Days of Struggle," in reference to the time these Cuban heroes have been held in US prisons.

Iogna denounced that the US government paid Miami-based journalists to create a hostile atmosphere against these men and influence the jury negatively.

As a result, The Cuban Five, as they are internationally known, were given harsh prison sentences from 15 years to two life plus 15 years.

Despite the injustice, they remain as determined as the first day to fight for the final triumph of truth.

"Their firm willpower can be appreciated in new year messages addressed to their people, their relatives and to all who demand their release worldwide," says the article.

The text reproduces Gerardo Hernandezâ?Ö message stating that "each day of resistance constitutes a new victory."

"The Free The Five Committee of Luxembourg will continue with the same determination until Rene, Antonio, Ramon, Gerardo and Fernando are back home with their people and their families," said the journalist.


Cuba-South Africa Cooperation Highlighted

Havana, Jan 11 (Prensa Latina) Cuba and South Africa maintain a wide-ranging cooperation in the political, social and economic fields, the First Secretary of the Embassy of South Africa in Cuba, Bafedile Ramatlape, said on Wednesday.

On the occasion of the celebration here of the 100th anniversary of the African National Congress (ANC), Ramatlape said that the two countries enjoy a dynamic, strategic partnership, strengthened with fraternal links.

The ANC was founded on January 8, 1912, and is considered the oldest liberation movement worldwide.

In remarks to Prensa Latina, the diplomat said the organization is an example of the movements for national liberation and national resistance for independence and self-determination in the African continent.

She said that these celebrations give the opportunity to reflect on the battles against discrimination, racism and oppression in South Africa.

After laying a wreath in this capital at the bust of ANC leader Oliver Tambo, Ramatlape highlighted the Cuban government and peopleâ?Ös role and selfless assistance in the struggle against apartheid.

The ceremony was attended by members of the diplomatic corps of Africa in Cuba and of the movement of solidarity with Africa.


Cuba Supports World Struggle vs. Illiteracy

Havana, Jan 12 (Prensa Latina) Cuba ratified its willingness to continue the struggle against illiteracy in the world, where there are about 800 million illiterate people, and 38 million children with no access to primary education.

Cuba reiterates its willingness to fight that scourge with humble but proved experiences in favor of humanity, Education Minister Ena Elsa Velazquez told the press.

Velazquez called attention to the constant work carried out by Cuban teachers to eradicate illiteracy, an effort that left significant results in over 28 countries worldwide, through using the methods "Yo Si Puedo" (Yes, I Can) and "Yo si puedo seguir" (Yes, I Can Continue).

Cuba currently redoubles efforts to raise education quality at all levels, improve pedagogical work and the development of vocational training and professional guidance, destined to the specialties needed by the country for its economic and social development, the minister said.


Symphony Debut in France in Homage to Che

Paris, Jan 12 (Prensa Latina The world premiere of the symphony "Death and Rebirth", in homage to Argentine Cuban guerrilla fighter Ernesto Che Guevara, will be held soon in France under the auspices of Cuba Si, France.

"It is a very important event, because Che is a man who contributed much to humanity, a man who made possible for us the conviction that everything is possible", Charlie Bouhana, the organization's president, told Prensa Latina.

The musical work by Julio Cesar Pardo will be premiered on April 19 in a theater with a great historical tradition in Amiens, a city in northern France, he said.

Through Cuba Si, France and the association "Music on Utopia" it was possible to bring together 40 musicians, who will participate in the concert to commemorate the 45 years since the assassination of Che.

The symphony will be presented later in other French scenarios and is expected to be presented also in Cuba in October, Bouhana said.

Bouhana revealed that there will be a CD and the money raised will be transferred to Cuba.

Several personalities, including Jean Cornier, who has written several books on the Heroic Guerrilla and will publish a new book in September, have been invited to the presentation.

Bouhana declared that Cuba is an example to them, and informed that soon a French goup will travel to Havana as part of the tour "In the footsteps of the Revolution" organized every year.