#US City Calls for Lifting #Blockade against #Cuba

Published by Alma


By Prensa Latina

The city of Helena, capital city of Montana state, urged the US Congress to lift the economic, commercial and financial blockade against Cuba, said a Cuban diplomat today.

The resolution, posted on Twitter by Miguel Fraga, first secretary of the Cuban Embassy in the United States, said that the city of Helena also urged the Congress to normalize the ties with the Cuban Government.

The document reiterates that during more than 50 years the blockade has represented restrictions and bans for bilateral ties, particularly regarding trade, travels and financial operations.

It also indicates that Montana is willing to be one of the main suppliers of consumer goods in Cuba, which would increase exports and jobs in the United States.

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#Spain: Prominent Figures Call on #Obama to End #Blockade on #Cuba

Published by Alma

Taken from Prensa Latina

Prominent political, social and cultural figures in Spain and elsewhere have called on U.S. President, Barack Obama, to totally lift the U.S. blockade that has been imposed on Cuba for more than 50 years.

Names such as Spaniard, Federico Mayor Zaragoza, former Director-General of UNESCO; and the Argentine, Adolfo Perez Esquivel, a Nobel Peace Prizewinner (1980), are among the signatories of a letter sent to Obama demanding the end of the genocidal policy.

The letter to the U.S. president is part of a campaign called ‘For a 2016 without the Blockade on Cuba’, Lois Perez, coordinator of the initiative, reported today in a news release.

‘Mr. President, we ask you, as a Nobel Peace Prizewinner, that you, in 2016, lift the inhumane blockade on the Republic of Cuba,’ the text says.

In the letter, the signatories urge the president to end the blockade against the island, with the aim of making the entire American continent a land of peace, brotherhood and free from wars, as Bolivar, Washington and Jose Marti dreamed.’

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I vote Vs #Blockade against #Cuba

By Alma

Cuban children Vs Blockade (Photo: Juvenal Balán)

Cuban children Vs Blockade (Photo: Juvenal Balán)

Since I was born I am one of the victims of the US blockade against Cuba, which began in October 1960. There are already 56 years since it began such genocidal policy, reflected in world history not only for its size in the damage it causes us, but also because there is no other people in the world that has been punished so unjust and hard  for so long, only to be bowed down.

And the stupid thing is that they have not succeeded. My people deserve a Record Guinness for their resistance, their high morale, but we do not need any awards because we have the support and recognition of millions of people worldwide, and 191 governments that support our resolution against the blockade.

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Press release: Third Meeting of the #Cuba-#US Bilateral Commission

Published by Alma


The third meeting of the Cuba-US Bilateral Commission was held in Havana on May 16, 2016. 

The Cuban delegation was headed by Josefina Vidal Ferreiro, Director-General of the U.S. Division at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Cuba, and the U.S. delegation was headed by Ambassador Kristie Kenney, Counselor of the State Department, and John S. Creamer, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs.

During the meeting, both delegations reviewed the implementation of the agreements adopted at the second meeting of this Commission as well as the results achieved in the course of the last six months.

Both delegations highlighted the increase of official visits in both directions, including the one paid by President Barack Obama to Havana in March, 2016; as well as of the technical meetings held to discuss topics of common interest and the bilateral instruments signed in order to expand mutually beneficial cooperation between Cuba and the United States.

However, similar advances have not been seen in the economic field because of the continued implementation of the blockade. Despite the steps that have been taken, there are still significant restrictions that limit U.S. exports; very few Cuban products can be imported by the United States; U.S. investments in Cuba are not allowed except in telecommunications; and there are no normal banking relations between both countries.

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The Co-operative Bank acknowledges extraterritorial application of the #blockade in #Britain

One of the logos of Co-op Bank. Not in this case (Alma)

As reported in GI in March, the Co-op Bank closed the bank accounts of the British Cuba Solidarity Campaign (CSC) in November 2015, citing among the reasons a change in its “risk appetite” and “global regulations”.

Now, following a huge campaign by CSC members and affiliates, the bank’s Chief Executive Niall Booker has finally confirmed in writing that the closure was due to “risk” arising from the sanctions imposed on the island by the U.S. government.

Responding to direct questions from concerned CSC members, Booker stated “It is correct that the sanctions that are in place are those imposed by OFAC.”

As such, the bank has acknowledged the extraterritorial application of the blockade in closing the accounts. Obeying the sanctions imposed by the United States Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) is illegal under British and European Union law.

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Three great achievements of medical sciences in #Cuba

Por Alma

Tomado de Radio Cadena Agramonte

Despite the economic blockade of the US against Cuba the country has some of the healthiest, most long-lived residents in the world, and medical advances have nothing to envy of the capitalist world. This is due to government investment in scientific research and preventive public health approach which considers health as a birthright.

Because of the 54-year trade blockade againts her, the island nation can’t exchange goods with U.S, one of the world’s largest economies and the largest medical market.  Still, Cuba is an unlikely global leader in public health and scientific investment.

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Why some students are ditching #America for medical school in #Cuba


When Sarpoma Sefa-Boakye, who grew up in southern California and went to UCLA, heard she could go to medical school in Cuba, she thought it must be a joke. Not that it existed—she met Cuban doctors while studying abroad in Ghana, so she knew about the country’s robust healthcare system. What was unbelievable was the cost.

“I called the office asking how much the program cost, how much the application fee was. They were just like ‘Free, free,’” says Sefa-Boakye. “How can it be free?” But indeed, the Latin American Medical School—ELAM, in Spanish—is free, charging no tuition, room, or board. In 2002, she packed her bags for Havana.

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