Cuba

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Re: Cuba

Post by blindpig » Tue Oct 23, 2018 11:21 am

The scope of the Cuban vaccine against hepatitis B
Cuba has, since 2000, the achievement of null reports of cases of acute hepatitis B infection in children under five years, thanks to the political will to vaccinate a hundred percent of the child population free of charge

Author: Nuria Barbosa León | internet@granma.cu

October 22, 2018 20:10:50

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In Cuba, the recombinant preventive vaccine against hepatitis b, Heberbiovac HB® has been produced for more than 25 years. Photo: Arnaldo Santos

Cuba has, since 2000, the achievement of null reports of cases of acute hepatitis B infection in children under five years, thanks to the political will to vaccinate 100% of the child population free of charge from the first hours after born the baby.

To this data should be added that, as of 2007, there are no reports of the disease until the age of 15, according to Dr. Zurina Cinza Estévez, in charge of the department of clinical studies of vaccines belonging to the sub-directorate of Clinical Investigations of the Center of Engineering. Genetics and Biotechnology (CIGB) of Havana.

To achieve these results, the recombinant preventive hepatitis B vaccine, Heberbiovac HB® , has been produced on the Caribbean island for more than 25 years . "Our vaccine does not depend on a cultivated virus, but on the recombinant protein that is obtained through the genetic information that is introduced into a yeast, to which its own genetic material is transformed. This yeast is capable of becoming a factory that, to the same extent that it produces enzymes and other substances for its functioning, generates the recombinant protein known by surface antigen of the hepatitis B virus, with which the vaccine is made, "explained the doctor.

«This surface antigen can be used in the production of the monovalent vaccine, that is, the specific vaccine and only against hepatitis B, or it can also be used in combination, forming part of the pentavalent vaccine, Heberpenta®-L, indicated for immunization against diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, hepatitis B and haemophilus influenzae type B ».

More recently, HeberNasvac® , a therapeutic recombinant vaccine administered through the nose, combining some doses subcutaneously, was also obtained in Cuba . In this therapeutic vaccine a mixture of the surface antigen is used with another antigen also recombinant, the antigen of the nucleocapsid of the hepatitis B virus. The new formulation allows the interaction of antigens in the tonsils and stimulates both the systemic and the level of immunity of the mucous membranes.

HeberNasvac® is another option available to treat adult patients with chronic infection with hepatitis B virus. To date, it has shown an excellent safety profile with a reduced number of adverse reactions, of short duration and mild. The most frequent are: pain at the site of injection, sneezing, runny nose, nasal itching and light fever less than 38 degrees Celsius.

In addition, the treatment turns out to be shorter using a smaller amount of HeberNasvac® (15 doses in 20 weeks) compared to Pegylated Interferon (another medicine) that needs 48 doses in 48 weeks of treatment, or compared to the indefinite use of antiviral, usually prescribed for life, said the scientist, and assured the existence of the product to meet the needs of the Cuban population and with capacity to export to other nations.

Scientists have observed a post-treatment antiviral effect superior to other drugs in existence, with a specific immuno-modulating activity against the two recombinant proteins. There is also evidence of greater effectiveness in long-term follow-up and in difficult genotypes of the virus, with benefits for patients who have been treated before with other available medications, without having managed to control the infection.

IN CONTEXT

-Data provided by the World Health Organization (WHO) highlight the existence of 257 million people chronically infected with hepatitis B in the world, which could lead to liver cirrhosis or hepatocellular carcinoma in 25% of the patients, and be the cause of death for 650,000.

-The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) reported in its reports that in the Americas region, 3.9 million people live with chronic hepatitis B and 7.2 million with chronic hepatitis C. Liver cancer is the fourth cause of death by this entity among men and the seventh among women in the Western Hemisphere.

- The Immunization Program of Cuba emerged in 1962 as a result of political and social transformations initiated in 1959, with the triumph of the Revolution, when communicable diseases, including those preventable by vaccines, caused the main morbidity and mortality in infants .

-The organization of the national health system has allowed some 4.8 million doses of simple or compound vaccines to be administered annually to protect against 13 diseases, including a pentavalent whose five components are produced in the country. The vaccination against hepatitis B in the first 24 hours after birth, was completed 19 years before the goal set by the WHO, thanks to the contribution of Cuban scientists.

-Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver commonly caused by a viral infection by one of the five major viruses of hepatitis (types A, B, C, D and E). It can cause acute infections and progress to chronic liver disease, cirrhosis, cancer or even death.

- Hepatitis B and C infections are transmitted through infected blood, contaminated needles and syringes, and between people who inject drugs. In the case of hepatitis B it can also be transmitted through unprotected sex and from an infected mother to her newborn child. They usually manifest as chronic infections that can remain asymptomatic for long periods of time, often for years.

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http://www.granma.cu/cuba/2018-10-22/el ... 8-20-10-50

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Re: Cuba

Post by blindpig » Thu Oct 25, 2018 2:02 pm

An effort for life
Forecasts indicate that by the end of the century, four Pinar del Río towns will be completely inundated due to climate change. The province is taking decisive steps to adapt, as part of the state plan “Tarea Vida”

Author: Ronald Suárez Rivas | internet@granma.cu

october 24, 2018 10:10:09

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Photo: Ronald Suárez Rivas

PINAR DEL RÍO.–Cuba will not be as we currently see it on the maps in the future. Devoured by the sea, what are now peaceful coastal towns will be submerged under water, while several beaches will be “swallowed up” by the rising sea.

There will be loss of biodiversity, and species from other places will come to take refuge in some ecosystems of the archipelago.

The climate will become increasingly hot and extreme. Hurricanes will be stronger, droughts more intense. And although not visible to the naked eye, saltwater intrusion will endanger crops and the purity of groundwater.

This is not the synopsis of a disaster movie, but the scenario that scientists predict for Cuba toward the end of this century, due to climate change.

In Pinar del Río, for example, it is expected that four towns will be completely inundated, and thousands of hectares of agricultural land will be affected by soil erosion and salinization.

Faced with such gloomy prospects, which are already becoming palpable, the province is adopting measures to adapt to climate change, and mitigate as much as possible its effects, as part of the state plan known as “Tarea Vida” (Life Task).

Yury Triana, delegate of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment (Citma), explained that a working group was formed in the territory for the control and implementation of the plan, chaired by the Provincial Administration Council and composed of the bodies with the greatest interest in the issue, such as Agriculture, Physical Planning, Hydraulic Resources, Tourism and Hermanos Saíz Montes de Oca University, among others.

The main actions are focused on seven prioritized municipalities in the Vueltabajo region (Consolación del Sur, La Palma, Los Palacios, Minas de Matahambre, Pinar del Río, San Juan y Martínez, and Sandino), due to the possible negative effects of climate change there.

The Citma delegate pointed out that the municipality of Guane is also included, taking into account the frequent flooding of several settlements, caused by the Cuyaguateje River, and Hazard, Vulnerability and Risk (PVR) studies.

“This doesn’t mean that there will be no impact in other places, but that we will have the greatest impact in the short, medium and long terms in these, according to the research,” she added.

Although there are many people who consider climate change to be a remote problem, the effects of which many of us here today will not live to see, scientists warn that its consequences are already evident.

Since the mid-twentieth century, for example, Cuba’s average annual temperature has increased by 0.9 degrees, rainfall patterns have varied, droughts have increased, and sea level has risen 6.77 centimeters.

Sc.D Jorge Ferro, of the Center for Environmental Research and Services, ECOVIDA, noted that the effects on marine ecosystems and also mangrove coverage are already visible in Pinar del Río.

Meanwhile, research shows that marine intrusion has caused an increase in salinity levels throughout the south-western plain, and that six sandy beaches have suffered intense erosion.

In addition, experts warn about a series of anomalous events in several species of the Guanahacabibes peninsula, also linked to probable manifestations of climate change.

Lázaro Márquez, director of Guanahacabibes National Park, explained that, among other phenomena, a displacement of the flowering periods of several melliferous plant species has been documented, as well as of the breeding migration pattern of the red crab.

The scientist added that new invasive species have also appeared in the region, associated with the disorder caused by hurricanes; and that some native species, such as coastal yanilla and bay lavender, have had an expansive pattern.

He noted that as a result, honey production has declined, and the nesting process of sea turtles has been affected.

“It was dangerous, that’s why they always got us out when a hurricane was forecast,” stated Amada Bellame, one of the residents of a new village built for families that previously lived by Las Canas beach.

"The trucks came and evacuated us with everything. The houses were left empty and with the roof secured.”

This happened repeatedly, in order to protect the inhabitants of this village in southern Pinar del Río from the ravages of nature.

“Once, the sea reached the reservoir. Things got really ugly,” recalled María Elena Argüelles.

“Water entered Las Canas through three different sites,” explained Gumersindo Zambrana. “Hence, almost every year we had to leave, until that hurricane swept away all of the houses.”

Built at kilometer 21 on the road to La Coloma, to accommodate those left homeless by Hurricanes Isidore and Lili in 2002, the village of 79 homes is one of the first in the province that reflects strategic actions outlined in Tarea Vida.

On deciding its location, the experiences of the province during extreme weather events were taken into account, as well as studies that indicate that by 2050 the area of Las Canas will be totally inundated.

By then, the town of Punta de Carta (San Juan y Martínez municipality), where 56 homes have already been relocated, will also be under water.

Meanwhile, it is estimated that by 2100, the hamlets of Dayaniguas (Los Palacios) and La Bajada (Sandino) will suffer the same fate.

Hence, among the measures planned in the province is the definitive relocation of all their residents to safer sites.

The reforestation of mangroves and woodland strips for water flow regulation, the sowing of corals, the development of more drought resistant seeds, soil improvement, the introduction of more efficient irrigation systems, the updating of PVR studies, and actions to raise awareness among the population, are also among the priorities of efforts underway in Pinar del Río.

By matching the guidelines of the state plan with that of the economy, several entities are taking significant steps forward.

This is the case of the Los Palacios Agro-industrial Grains Enterprise, a series of different technologies have been introduced to level rice fields, which can significantly reduce water consumption and increase yields.

Among the experiences with the greatest impact is the Barcón agricultural production area, responsible for supplying the provincial capital, where engineering solutions and the recovery of canals has meant water can be channeled from the El Punto reservoir to the majority of the 1,500 hectares of crops.

Víctor Fidel Hernández, provincial Agriculture delegate, explained that this effort has allowed for the closure of most of Barcón’s wells, and means that in the near future, the area will not need to rely on any groundwater sources.

Following this same principle, Fidel added, the reactivation of a siphon and a system of canals, to drive the water from the reservoir, will allow for another 1,600 hectares to be dedicated to rice production, without compromising the water table.

However, this is just the beginning. To achieve its mission, the state plan will require a program of medium (through 2030) and long (through 2050) term measures, to ensure the continuity of what has been done thus far. In addition, the support of those who are still not fully aware of this complex environmental problem, or see it as something far-off in time, will be required.

The country that our children and grandchildren will inherit depends to a large extent on this essential effort of all, for the future and for life.

http://en.granma.cu/cuba/2018-10-24/an-effort-for-life

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Re: Cuba

Post by blindpig » Wed Oct 31, 2018 1:19 pm

Bruno Rodríguez: “We are certain that the amendments will be rejected”
In statements offered to the press today, the Cuban Foreign Minister spoke about what will happen tomorrow, October 31, regarding the debate on the annual resolution presented in the UN by Cuba against the U.S. blockade. The vote itself will take place this Thursday, November 1

Author: Digital news staff | informacion@granma.cu

october 30, 2018 15:10:44

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Photo: Cubaminrex

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez stated today in a press conference that the United States government, in its desire to create greater tensions and increase hostility, is posing obstacles to the forthcoming vote against the blockade in the UN.

He explained that the U.S. State Department originally presented a document consisting of eight paragraphs of amendments to the draft resolution “Necessity of ending the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the United States against Cuba.” However, the text was hastily divided into eight separate amendments that will be submitted to the United Nations General Assembly for analysis tomorrow.

All this pursues the obvious aim of creating a pretext to tighten the blockade, and attempt to present the illusion that there is international support for the policy, Rodríguez stressed. The U.S. delegation to the UN seeks to disturb, consume time, create confusion and hinder the adoption of the resolution calling for the end of the blockade against Cuba.

The amendments presented by the United States have the objective of changing the nature of the resolution that opposes the blockade, with emphasis on the extraterritorial application of the policy, he explained. Instead, he said, the United States wants to turn it into a resolution that contains attacks against Cuba in the field of human rights, which are totally unjustified.

Cuba has presented this draft resolution for the last 26 years and, this time, the United States seeks to obstruct the adoption of the resolution, and thus disguise “the massive, flagrant and systematic violation of the human rights of all the Cuban people,” that the blockade represents, the Minister emphasized.

The U.S. delegation is thus forcing the UN General Assembly to debate eight aggressive amendments, which manipulate the issue of human rights and the Sustainable Development Goals. Rodríguez noted that there are other bodies of the UN where it would be more appropriate to seriously debate such issues.

Unlike in previous years, in the morning session this Wednesday, October 31, there will be a debate in the General Assembly about the resolution presented by Cuba, including remarks by groups of countries and member states. The vote on the draft resolution calling for the end of the blockade will take place on Thursday, as instead of facilitating a short voting act as in previous years, the U.S. State Department seeks to alter the process through the submission of these eight separate amendments, he explained.

“It is a policy that violates international law, transgresses the internationally recognized rules of commerce, violates freedom of navigation, that constitutes an act of aggression and economic warfare.

“Powerless, the government of the United States has found no other way this year than to try to hamper the adoption of the resolution, or to modify the content in an opportunistic, underhand manner.

“Thus, my impression is that the United States government, in its desire to increase tensions, increase hostility against Cuba, knows no bounds in this case, in creating difficulties for the General Assembly, which is an international, universal and democratic body of the United Nations.

“It is an attempt that will surely be rejected, but that does not pursue other purposes than to try to mask the situation of absolute and profound isolation that the United States government has in relation to Cuba, and to obscure the overwhelming rejection of the economic, commercial and financial blockade.

“We are confident that the amendments will be rejected, and that the resolution will receive overwhelming majority support, as has happened in the past,” the Cuban Foreign Minister stressed.

(Cubaminrex)

http://en.granma.cu/cuba/2018-10-30/bru ... e-rejected
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Re: Cuba

Post by blindpig » Thu Nov 01, 2018 1:16 pm

Cuba is not alone: Nations of the world highlight the absurdity of the U.S. blockade against Cuba in the UN
The UN General Assembly today addressed for the twenty-seventh consecutive year the draft resolution presented by Cuba calling for an end to the criminal U.S. blockade

Author: GI news staff | informacion@granmai.cu

october 31, 2018 19:10:46


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Once again, the UN General Assembly debated the draft resolution presented by Cuba calling for an end to the U.S. blockade. Despite U.S. attempts to sabotage the annual debate and pressure other nations to vote against Cuba - through the submission of eight ridiculous amendments to the text - this October 31 saw a wealth of nations express their support for Cuba and condemn this criminal, genocidal policy.

The 27th annual vote on the Resolution will take place tomorrow, November 1st.

Granma International offers a summary of some of the main speeches:

EL SALVADOR


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El Salvador’s representative to the UN, speaking on behalf of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) stressed: “The U.S. should normalize relations through bilateral dialogue according to international law. The U.S. should end the blockade and return Guantánamo to the Cuban people.”

SINGAPORE


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Singapore’s UN representative, speaking on behalf of ASEAN (The Association of Southeast Asian Nations) stated: “Ending the blockade will contribute to economic development of both Cuba and the U.S.”

VENEZUELA


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Venezuelan Ambassador to the UN, Samuel Moncada, spoke on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM): “The Movement takes the opportunity to denounce the coercive and unilateral measures implemented by the U.S. government toward Cuba.” He emphasized that the blockade damages all vital sectors of the economy, that Cuba has been denied access to international markets and technology transfer, and that the prolongation of the policy is totally absurd.

THE BAHAMAS


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UN representative of The Bahamas, speaking on behalf of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), expressed support for Cuba’s resolution: “The blockade is a punitive act against the Cuban people. Cuba is a peaceful and cooperative state - and a voice of reason for matters on the international agenda.”

VIETNAM


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Vietnam’s representative referred to Trump’s Cuba policy: “Since last year, the embargo has been further intensified and tightened – representing further setbacks in U.S.-Cuba relations and causing grave damages to the Cuban people.”

JAMAICA


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Jamaica’s ambassador noted: “The U.S. embargo of Cuba is an affront to the collective expression of the international community that has consistently called for the embargo to be lifted.”

SOUTH AFRICA


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The South African representative to the UN stressed: “As a manifestation of solidarity, Cuba shares its human resources across the global south... Cuba made a great contribution to the elimination of apartheid, and for that we are eternally grateful.” He continued: “South Africa rejects the United States’ amendments to Cuba’s resolution. They are clearly an attempt to undermine the serious issue of the collective human rights violations imposed by the U.S. against the Cuban people through the embargo.”

BOLIVIA


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The Bolivian Ambassador to the UN noted: “It is highly cynical of the U.S. to attempt to tamper with Cuba’s resolution... The U.S. is trying to attack the entire multilateral system and the principles of the UN.” He added: “We should pay tribute to Cuba who has provided selfless assistance to so much of the world in health, in education: Where illiteracy plagues countries - Cuba is there. When Ebola struck – Cuba was there. When earthquakes happen – Cuba is there. Cuba keeps hope alive.”

ALGERIA:


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Algeria’s representative explained: “Cuba is more than just a friend that stood by us in dire times... Cuba has expressed solidarity in many parts of the world, including the undeniable commitment and expertise shown by the Cuban doctors who responded to the call to help fight the Ebola crisis in 2014.

NICARAGUA:


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Nicaragua’s representative to the UN emphasized: “Despite the U.S. attacks, Cuba continues to remain strong. Cuba is solidarity. Our Cuban brothers and sisters have always been the vanguard for responding to emergency situations in any part of the world.”


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Re: Cuba

Post by blindpig » Tue Nov 06, 2018 12:23 am

Popular consultation of the Cuban constitutional reform:

659,527 proposals

560,003 modifications

27,238 additions

38,505 eliminations

33,781 doubts

111,872 meetings

7,370,160 assistances (64.2% of the Cuban population)

1,445,289 interventions

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Courtesy @JoseJuMarti

That's democracy, not this charade tomorrow
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Re: Cuba

Post by blindpig » Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:13 pm

The people as a constituent body
For over almost 60 years, Cuban citizens have agreed that the state directs, foments, and promotes education, the sciences, and culture in all its manifestations

Author: Ortelio González Martínez | internet@granma.cu

november 9, 2018 09:11:48


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All proposals, without exception, are to be evaluated by the National Assembly commission. Photo: Endrys Correa Vaillant

CIEGO DE ÁVILA.–Discussions of the proposed new Constitution of the Republic continue - contextualized, with abundant collective intelligence, and no unanswered questions.

All proposals, without exception, are to be evaluated by the National Assembly commission, and a new updated proposal will return to this body, where it will be discussed once again and approved, to then be submitted to a popular referendum in which every citizen can cast a direct, secret ballot vote.

The debates are democracy in action, popular tribunals in which everyone can express their point of view. There are some articles that generate more debate, like those on citizenship and marriage. Others are less commented upon but are at the center of popular participation, like Title V: Principles of Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Policy, since it is no secret that since January of 1959, work has not ceased to foment and promote the nation’s history, and ethical, moral, civic, and patriotic values among citizens.

It is no accident that, of the more than 9,200 proposals made in the province thus far, only 85 address this title and its 13 paragraphs - evidence that the majority agree that the state directs, foments, and promotes education, the sciences, and culture in all its manifestations, as it has for almost 60 years.

Referring to paragraph 271 (Education is the responsibility of the state, it is secular and based on the contributions of science and the principles and values of our society), participants argued that education, in the first place, is the responsibility of the family, which must be the first to develop a high level of ethical, moral, civic, and patriotic values in children, as is stated in the following paragraph, number 272.

On this and other issues related to artistic expression, there were those who spoke of the lack of quality creations. If we understand art as a product of human beings, this is what is really declining among exponents of some expressions, above all music, in which composers and groups prioritize banality for economic gain, to the detriment of social interests.

Likewise, more than a few commentaries advocated that the Constitution reaffirm that artistic expression is free, and give no backing to censorship of cultural products.

In this regard, others expressed the opinion that the document should add that although freedom of artistic expression is protected, ethical and civic values of Cuban socialist society must be respected.

FROM THE CONSTITUTION OF ’76 TO THE CURRENT POPULAR CONSULTATION

- The current Constitution proclaimed February 24, 1976, is the document that has remained in effect for the longest period in our constitutional history. Its drafting was the responsibility of a joint Party-state commission established by agreement of the Council of Ministers, February 22, 1974.

- The draft proposal was submitted to popular discussion, and once all opinions had been collected and considered during the First Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba Party, the text was submitted to a direct, secret ballot referendum, and approved with the support of 97.7% of voters.

- It is a text that reflects the economic and social circumstances of the period during which it was written, of the construction of socialism, and drew from the constitutional experience of socialist countries in Eastern Europe, especially the Soviet Union.

- This Carta Magna established an exclusively parliamentary procedure for reform, recognizing that the scope of any reform could be partial or total, with reinforced voting requirements, as well as the obligation to hold a referendum if certain issues were involved, although no clauses were identified as unalterable.

- The current Constitution underwent an important reform in 1992, to reflect the changes that had taken place nationally and internationally, as a result of the fall of European socialism and the disintegration of the Soviet Union, and to reflect agreements reached at the Communist Party of Cuba Fourth Congress on the perfecting of People’s Power bodies, among other questions.

- The scope of the changes led to questions as to whether or not the reform was partial or a total one, which would require approval in a referendum, but the discussion did not extend beyond academic circles.

- The last reform took place in 2002, an initiative taken by mass organizations, to change the reform mechanism and establish an inalterability clause, which involved eliminating any mention of total or partial reform and establishing the irrevocable nature of Cuba’s political, social, economic system and the prohibition on negotiating under force, coercion, or threats thereof by a foreign power. In this way, the country’s socialist system was protected and its destruction by constitutional means prohibited.

- After the Communist Party of Cuba’s Sixth Congress was held in April of 2011, where changes in Cuba’s socio-economic system were introduced, and the First Party Conference made adaptations to the organization’s work methods, the need for a future reform of the Constitution was foreseen.

- In May of 2013, the Political Bureau created a task force, presided by Raúl Castro Ruz and composed of 12 other members, to evaluate the Constitutional impact of recent decisions, and those projected for the future, in line with the process of perfecting the country’s institutions. Working over a full year, this group prepared the foundations that would serve to guide the reform process, which were approved by the Political Bureau on June 29, 2014.

- As part of studies conducted, analyzed was the legal impact of the Reform and Renewal processes carried out, respectively, in China and Vietnam, countries which continue the construction of socialism based on their own particular characteristics.- Also necessary was research on constituent processes in the Latin American environment, in particular, the most significant that took place in Venezuela, Bolivia, and Ecuador. Likewise, a broad study was conducted of various constitutional texts from our constitutional history, as well as the extensive literature on these issues.- The task force held more than 100 analysis meetings at different times, in which positions were addressed and possible solutions projected. It was necessary not only to respond to the current economic situation, but also to the challenges our society faces in the future.- In February of this year, over several days, the Political Bureau learned of the studies carried out and important precisions were made. A month later, the Communist Party of Cuba Central Committee heard reports from the Political Bureau meeting, and also formulated several recommendations.- The Council of State, which represents the National Assembly of People’s Power between sessions, convened an extraordinary session to consider the beginning of the reform process, which took place on June 2, when this body agreed to create a Commission of its members to prepare the draft constitutional proposal.- The Commission is chaired by Army General Raúl Castro Ruz and is composed of 32 deputies representing different sectors: intellectuals, journalists, scientists, historians, jurists, educators, political leaders, and those of mass organizations. It includes eight individuals from the initial group established by the Political Bureau in 2013.- The Commission worked intensively, taking as a reference all previous work done, which undoubtedly contributed to progress in drafting the proposal.The National Assembly discussed the draft for two days (July 2-3) and after a broad discussion, in which diverse opinions were expressed, including opposition to some articles, consensus on the proposal was achieved. It should be noted that the debate was followed closely by the population on television and other media.

- The National Assembly voted to submit the document to popular consultation with a view toward improving and enriching the text with the direct participation of the people, including Cubans living abroad, diplomatic missions, and professional collaborators working in other countries – in a clear example of the effective participatory democracy that distinguishes the process and makes it unique. The people have become a constituent body.

(Information from the presentation by Homero Acosta Álvarez, Council of State secretary, during the opening of the 2018 International Law Congress)

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Re: Cuba

Post by blindpig » Sat Nov 10, 2018 3:44 pm

CIA agents in Bolivia: From Miami to Vallegrande
Fifty-one years after Che’s death, today it is known that Gustavo Villoldo Sampera, Félix Ismael Rodríguez Mendigutía, and Julio Gabriel García García, who received military training at U.S. bases, were responsible for his assassination

Author: Francisco Arias Fernández | internet@granma.cu

november 8, 2018 10:11:10

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The presence of a large group of Cuban-born infiltrated Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) agents in the Bolivian Interior Ministry, there to wage war against the guerrilla forces of Comandante Ernesto Che Guevara and to lead criminal actions against the left in this country, was recently confirmed by the revelations of a close collaborator of the United States, who served as head of the Bolivian Intelligence Services and the CIA Technical Department in La Paz, between 1964 and 1968.

In the documentary titled Operación Gaveta 1964-1968, La CIA en Bolivia, testimonio del agente CIA Ricardo Aneyba Torrico (Operation Gaveta 1964-1968. The CIA in Bolivia: Testimony of CIA agent Ricardo Aneyba Torrico), Aneyba states that “It was the gringos who were in charge in Bolivia. The entire third floor of the government ministry was run by the Cubans of Miami, by the gusanera, CIA officers and agents.”

The historic research carried out by Cuban doctors Adys Cupull and Froilán González, included in the books The CIA Against Che and Sin olvido crímenes en La Higuera, identified no less than 12 Cuban-born CIA agents, with false identities, and some with a history of terrorist activity.

They specify that three of these agents participated actively in the assassination of Che and his comrades: Gustavo Villoldo Sampera, Félix Ismael Rodríguez Mendigutía and Julio Gabriel García García. The three were all part of the terrorist anti-Cuban mafia and received military training in U.S. bases; were on the CIA payroll, which trained them in techniques of infiltration, interrogation, torture, explosives, interception of correspondence, telephone communications, and persecution.

They were also included on police reports for their implication in drug trafficking scandals in different parts of the world, including in the countries where they carried out criminal missions on behalf of the CIA. However, the evidence against them was never “sufficient” and they always escaped the U.S. justice system.

A quick look at agent Gustavo Villoldo’s career reveals him working as a collaborator of Fulgencio Batista’s police in 1959; a year later, he was recruited by the CIA to act against Cuba; and two years later he was already the main agent of infiltration and sabotage groups. In Bolivia, he participated in the interrogation and torture of detainees, and publicly boasted of having kicked and slapped Che’s body, and of the decision to cut off his hands.

In Brazil and Mexico, he coordinated plans for attacks against Cuban diplomats. He was sent by the CIA as an agent of torture to Vietnam, and to Honduras during the dirty war against Nicaragua.

As early as 1978, the FBI had presented the CIA with arguments and evidence of his involvement in drug trafficking, and of a plane he owned having disappeared with two Cuban-born crew members mixed up in the illicit drug trade. The Agency protected him and dismissed the evidence. Five years later, he established a business selling seafood, which was denounced as a cover for his narcotics operation, linked to the mafia.

He attended a military training course at Fort Benning, Georgia, alongside terrorists Luis Posada Carriles, Jorge Mas Canosa, and Félix Rodríguez.

This last terrorist, who called himself Félix Ramos and was born in Cuba in 1941, was educated by his uncle José Antonio Mendigutía Silvera, Fulgencio Batista’s minister of Public Works, and one of his closest collaborators.

“El Gato” (The Cat) Félix, as he was also known among Miami mafiosos and CIA agents, had studied at the Havana Military Academy before leaving Cuba in 1960. He arrived in Florida, was recruited by the Agency and sent to the Panama Canal to receive terrorist training. His first proposal was a plan to assassinate Comandante en Jefe Fidel Castro Ruz, and he immediately became involved in the infiltration of equipment and explosives for sabotage actions, as well as supplies to the internal counterrevolution to support the invasion at Playa Girón. A month after the crushing defeat there, he sought refuge in an embassy, from where he left for Caracas, Venezuela, and then traveled to the U.S.

It was precisely CIA agent Félix Rodríguez who at 10:00am on October 9, 1967, received the encrypted message from his superiors with the order to assassinate Che. He carried out the order past 1:00pm that same day, after attempting to interrogate Che, beating him and telling him that he was going to kill him. This cowardly attitude was repudiated even by the Bolivian soldiers present. Researchers note that “The CIA agent also fired at Che’s body.”

Having earned his stripes as a murderer, Rodríguez was rewarded with U.S. citizenship. The CIA sent him to Peru in 1968, to teach intelligence and patrol classes to a paratrooper unit; and he was later sent to South Vietnam to torture and interrogate prisoners. The Agency awarded him the “Star for Valor.”

During the 1980s, he was used in U.S. operations and dirty wars in Uruguay, Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica, Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, Chile, and Nicaragua, where he was involved in the Iran-Contra scandal, accused of participating in arms and drug trafficking, in collusion with the CIA and the Nicaraguan Contras.

The last public images of Rodríguez place him in Panama City during the 2015 Summit of the Americas, fleeing into a minibus faced with the popular response to his provocations along with other anti-Cuban mafiosos and terrorists.

According to the research by Froilán González and Adys Cupull, the CIA agent who decided to sever Che’s hands was Julio Gabriel García García, born in Havana in 1928, a man with delusions of grandeur and hallucinations, who worked in the fascist police force of Francisco Franco in Spain, and later in Batista’s secret police. It was he who, on the triumph of the Revolution, transferred part of the archives of the Bureau for the Repression of Communist Activities (BRAC), where he was an instructor, to the U.S. Embassy in Havana, for their subsequent transfer to that country.

In Bolivia, he installed himself in the Interior Ministry building, and occupied almost the entire third floor, taking over the Intelligence Service for his purposes. He participated in interrogations and torture of campesinos, social leaders, and guerrillas, using savage violence, including throwing guerrilla fighters out of helicopters to their death.

He also received U.S. citizenship for his bloody service record, which he considered “the highest honor” of his life. He would later advise military dictatorships in Latin America, and end up involved in a drug trafficking scandal in the pay of the Miami mafia along with some Guyanese, which led to an FBI search of his residence and a gun in his mouth. The scare caused him angina; he became ill and ended up having to have both legs amputated.

Villoldo and Rodríguez were among the few who attended his funeral, and had to help his widow to pay for it, who complained that the CIA had abandoned him and his 22 years with the Agency had earned him nothing.

Fifty-one years after those events, the immortal, Latin American and universal Che, inspires an optimistic and rebellious struggle for the future, in the face of the injustices and crimes of today’s mobsters and agents who, like yesterday’s, have no other future than contempt, condemnation, and oblivion.

http://en.granma.cu/mundo/2018-11-08/ci ... allegrande
"We ask no compassion from you. When our turn comes, we shall not make excuses for the terror."

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Re: Cuba

Post by blindpig » Tue Nov 20, 2018 2:22 pm

Peace Boat brings anti-war message to Cuba
The danger posed to the world by nuclear weapons was the focus of a forum held on the Peace Boat, which docked in Havana earlier this month

Author: Nuria Barbosa León | internet@granma.cu

Author: Chavelis González Suárez | informacion@granmai.cu

november 19, 2018 17:11:11

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Departure of the Peace Boat, November 4, 2018, with 1,200 passengers from 22 countries on board. The Boat headed to Jamaica after its stay in Havana. Photo: Orlando Perea

The danger posed to the world by the existence of nuclear weapons marked the focus of the debate in the Forum for Peace and Revolution, organized by the Japanese Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), Peace Boat, which this November docked at the port of Havana for the nineteenth time, and the second this year.

A message, signed by several civil society organizations, including the Cuban Institute of Friendship with the Peoples, the Cuban Movement for Peace, and the Cuban Association of the United Nations, reiterated Cuba’s firm commitment to strengthening and consolidating international treaties on disarmament.

“Seventy-three years have passed since the criminal atomic bombings of the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and humanity continues to be threatened by the existence of more than 14,400 nuclear weapons, of which 3,750 are deployed and almost 2,000 are on operational alert,” read the text released in the presence of two survivors of the 1945 attacks on Japan.

In addition, young people were called on to join this struggle, raise awareness regarding the threat of a nuclear disaster, and defend humanity’s right to a future of peace. “Together with the nations that long for an end to all wars, and with the power of civil society at the international level, we will continue to demand that nuclear weapons prohibition agreements be complied with until their total elimination, and we will contribute to the construction of a culture of peace around the world,” highlighted the Cuban message.

The heartbreaking and eloquent testimony of those who experienced the horrors of the atomic attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, known as hibakushas, moved those present in the forum, as they described horrific images of walking among a multitude of corpses and burned people, whose faces no longer resembled those of human beings, screaming desperately for water.

Michiko Tsukamoto and Tamiko Sora were just girls at the time of the explosion, but it remains present in their memory. They suffered the loss of their loved ones, and today are among the few remaining survivors. They continue to talk about the tragedy because they recognize that the magnitude of the atomic attack has not yet been fully understood by all.

The Forum was also attended by Mako Ando, a Japanese youth representative committed to a world free of nuclear weapons, who works to raise awareness of the dangers posed if humanity fails to denuclearize. Referring to the hibakushas, she noted: “They suffer when they tell their stories, but they do so again and again because they do not want anyone else to experience such barbarism.”

Speaking on the panel, D.Sc Leyde Rodríguez Hernández condemned the atrocities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki: “We live in a time of enormous threats to international peace and security. The United States, the same power that has imposed an unjust and illegal economic, commercial, and financial blockade on the Cuban people, causing enormous human and material damages, has taken the initiative to destroy multilateralism in international relations and, with its devastating policy, dismantle the system of international treaties and agreements that served as a foundation for peace and security after WWII.”

He explained that nuclear weapons and missile defense systems today represent a serious threat to humanity, and the fight for their prohibition and total elimination should be of the highest priority, as a duty and a right of the peoples.

“The maintenance and modernization of nuclear weapons consumes much of the resources that could and should be destined for economic development, job creation, the reduction of poverty and hunger, health, education, and to prevent and combat natural disasters caused by global climate change. These resources should be redirected toward the development and fulfillment of the Sustainable Development Goals included in the 2030 Agenda,” the vice-rector of the Higher Institute of International Relations added.

The Forum for Peace and Revolution was dedicated to commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Cuban revolutionary triumph, the 73rd anniversary of the criminal U.S. bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and to the memory of Comandante en Jefe Fidel Castro, who received members of the boat twice (in 2010 and 2012).

Natsue Onda, director of this Peace Boat trip, condemned the interventionist policy of the U.S. blockade against Cuba, and said she was pleased to hold the event aboard the ship, in the presence of so many Cubans. She highlighted the friendship between Cuba and the organization, who share the same commitments in this field.

The Peace Boat has been visiting Cuba since 1989, and this is its 99th voyage around the world, carrying a message of peace and friendship. On this occasion, the ship was carrying 1,200 passengers of 22 nationalities (most of them Japanese), who toured different historic and tourist sites of Havana, and exchanged with community organizations related to senior citizens, culture, and with students.

In a press conference, travel coordinator Adrián Godínez stressed that passengers were very interested in visiting the island, thanks to the stories of previous participants, who highlighted the warm welcome received. Other motivations to visit include the popularization of Cuban culture on the Asian continent, especially salsa music, and interest in the history of the Cuban Revolution and its leaders.

The Peace Boat promotes its voyages online, on posters in public spaces, and through the 11 friendship with Cuba organizations that operate in Japan. The NGO Peace Boat received the Order of Solidarity awarded by the Council of State of the Republic of Cuba in 2009.

As a result of the first meeting with passengers of the ship in 2010, the historic leader of the Revolution, Fidel Castro, wrote a reflection titled “We will never forget,” in which he noted: “Now, as for your slogan – which, in my view has very special value, ‘Learn from past wars to build a future of peace,’ will undoubtedly always have meaning – at this moment it is more relevant than ever. I would dare say, without fear of being mistaken, that never in the history of humanity was there such a dangerous moment as this...”

http://en.granma.cu/cuba/2018-11-19/pea ... ge-to-cuba

This boat was in NYC a couple weeks ago and I never heard a peep. Why does the USA hate peace?
"We ask no compassion from you. When our turn comes, we shall not make excuses for the terror."

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Re: Cuba

Post by blindpig » Fri Nov 23, 2018 2:00 pm

In the footsteps of solidarity (+Photos)
Photos by Araquém Alcántara capture the daily lives and efforts of Cuban doctors working in Brazil as part of the More Doctors program for the last five years

Author: Araquém Alcántara | informacion@granmai.cu

november 21, 2018 15:11:29

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Photo: Araquém Alcántara
There are many anecdotes. Much love offered in the most unheard-of places in Brazil, where solidarity and an internationalist spirit led thousands of Cuban doctors. There is also much gratitude from the poor and humble who previously received no medical attention or health care.

Cuban doctors will never forget their experiences in the South American giant. The grateful people of the favelas, the deep Amazon, and of so many other places, will not forget Cuba either

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Photo: Araquém Alcántara
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Photo: Araquém Alcántara
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Photo: Araquém Alcántara

http://en.granma.cu/mundo/2018-11-21/in ... solidarity

Capitalism knows no bounds in it's existential death struggle. The plagues of Amazonia upon them.
"We ask no compassion from you. When our turn comes, we shall not make excuses for the terror."

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Re: Cuba

Post by blindpig » Mon Dec 03, 2018 12:07 am

AMLO negotiates with Cuba agreement to receive doctors leaving Brazil
The negotiations between the government of the Mexican president and the Cuban regime began last September

Verónica Calderón SUNDAY, DECEMBER 2, 2018 | 8:02 AM

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MEXICO CITY - Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) is finalizing the details of an agreement with Cuba to receive at least 3,000 doctors from medical missions in Brazil. Negotiations between the government of the Mexican president and the Cuban regime began in September.

Lázaro Cárdenas Batel, the new coordinator of advisors to the Mexican presidency, has been the link between representatives of the Cuban regime headed by Miguel Díaz-Canel and collaborators of the governments of Luiz Inácio Lula Da Silva and Dilma Rousseff. The objective: a Mexican adaptation of Mais Medicos, a program that involved some 15,000 Cuban specialists in 1,600 municipalities located in some of the most difficult areas in Brazil.

For now, Cuban doctors have received the announcement that the transfers between Brazil and Cuba had been interrupted because, according to the head of the missions, "there were no airlines available." The document mentions that they expect the transfers to resume between "December 3 and 4", a few days after López Obrador's protest in Mexico.

Cárdenas Batel has been a key player in the management of the Cuban regime and the Workers' Party that sealed the agreement between Cuba and Brazil. He is the heir of a dynasty deeply identified with the leftist causes in Mexico. Both he and his father, Cuauhtémoc Cárdenas Solórzano, maintain a solid friendship with members of the PT.

The relationship between the Cárdenas, the Castro regime and other governments identified as "leftist" in Latin America is solid. Cuauhtémoc Cárdenas, who met Fidel Castro in 1959, maintained with the deceased dictator a relationship that he defined as "not narrow but yes of affection" and described his death as "a loss to the world."

Cárdenas, 84, also has a friendship with Lula. He visited him in prison only three months ago and has said several times in public that the former president of Brazil is the victim of an "injustice." Lula is in jail accused of corruption as part of Operação Lava Jato , a multi-million dollar money laundering scheme with open causes in several Latin American countries.

Lula and the Brazilian ex-chancellor Celso Amorim visited Michoacán, the Mexican state that is the cradle of the Cárdenas family, in 2003. Fifteen years later, the closeness continues to bear fruit. It has been precisely Amorim who has held talks with Lázaro Cárdenas Batel, the coordinator of presidential advisors for López Obrador, who has served as a link for the talks between Brazil, Cuba and Mexico.

"Nobody better than Lázaro Cárdenas Batel to do the necessary management among the three countries, considers a source involved in the negotiations. Cárdenas Batel also maintains a close relationship with Cuba. The youngest of Cárdenas and coordinator of advisors to AMLO maintains strong links with Havana, which came to light when he was elected governor of Michoacán in 2002.

The beginnings of a "friendship"

"I studied at the Higher Institute of Art in Havana, my wife is Cuban and, obviously, I have a close and close relationship with that country and with many people in that country. my relationship with Cuba is not the relationship of the government of Michoacán or any authority of Michoacán with Cuba, "he explained 14 years ago who is now one of the closest collaborators of the presidency of AMLO.

The data contradict him. More than 400 Cuban officials served as advisors to the Michoacan government during his tenure, fifty Cuban professors took up positions in the Michoacan education secretariat for a literacy program implemented only for that purpose and arranged for as many others to be received in similar programs in Oaxaca , Veracruz and Tabasco. "Programs tailored to the Cuban government," says one of the collaborators of the Michoacán government of Cárdenas Batel. The Cubans occupied positions in health, education and art despite criticism, all under the mantle of the heir of the Cárdenas dynasty. "These collaborations until now had been in Mexican states, but they had never been considered a federal policy."

But the conjuncture produced in only three months and the political scenarios in Mexico and Brazil have allowed Cárdenas Batel's diplomatic skills to come to the rescue of Mais Medicos, a program that the Cuban regime maintains in more than 60 countries, but few as important as Venezuela and, until a few days ago, Brazil.

An unprecedented agreement between Mexico and Cuba

Although the Castro regime has reached agreements with Mexico in some regions, none has a national scope. The Mexican version of Mais Medicos, if materialized, is unprecedented in the relationship between Cuba and Mexico.

The wife of Cárdenas Batel, Mayra Coffigny, has been "a key factor" to strengthen the links between the Castro regime and the public administrations in charge of her husband. Coffigny has never hidden his sympathy and admiration for Fidel Castro. Cuban doctors who participate in medical missions receive a quarter of their salary, the rest is received by the Castro regime.

López Obrador has said that the current Mexican public health scheme in Mexico is "insufficient" and has promised that under his government, Mexicans will have access to a system similar to that of "Canada, Denmark, England and the Nordic countries."

The path to a health system like the examples cited by the new Mexican president seems difficult. In response, several collaborators of López Obrador have insisted again and again, in public, in private, on social networks and in front of microphones that the government of AMLO will solve the lack of doctors in the most neglected areas of the country but until now no one had explained how he would do it.

The first solution, for now, points to Havana.

( In collaboration with Estadão de São Paulo)

https://www.cubanet.org/big-news/amlo-c ... os-brasil/

Google Translator

Well fuck, I'm impressed. That's throwing down the old gauntlet.
"We ask no compassion from you. When our turn comes, we shall not make excuses for the terror."

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