Because the Cuba Central Team is taking a little mid-summer break, we will not be sending out your usual, full-length newsblast this Friday. We’ll be back as usual next Friday; but for now, we offer you this mid-summer week’s top Cuba news – in brief.
Cuba Hits Wall in 2-Year Push to Expand the Private Sector, Victoria Burnett, New York Times
“Nearly two years into the Cuban government’s economic overhaul aimed at slashing public payrolls and bolstering private enterprise, the reforms have slowed so much that many Cuban entrepreneurs and intellectuals are questioning the aging leadership’s ability — or will — to reshape one of the world’s last Communist systems and shift nearly half of the island’s output to private hands.”
Cuba’s Public Health Ministry published an official notice in state newspaper Granma confirming a total of 158 cases of cholera since the outbreak began three weeks ago. On Saturday, the Health Ministry announced that the number of new cases of cholera is declining and the disease had not spread to other provinces, reports Reuters.
Palestinian president urged Cuba to free Alan Gross, Juan O. Tamayo, Miami Herald
“In a phone call to President Raúl Castro, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas urged Cuba to free jailed U.S. subcontractor Alan Gross in hopes of persuading Republican U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen to release a $147 million grant to the Palestinian government, according to a news report. Ros-Lehtinen did later remove her hold on the funds, but an aide said the decision had nothing to do with any contact between Abbas and the Cuban regime.”
Around the Region
Chilean judge charges 2 retired military officers for torture death of ex-president’s father, Luis Andres Henao, Associated Press
“Two retired Chilean colonels were charged Tuesday with torturing to death the father of former Chilean President Michelle Bachelet, General Alberto Bachelet. General Bachelet, loyal to then-President Salvador Allende, was arrested during the Pinochet coup and died in 1974 at age 51 in the custody of the Air Force War Academy. Ex-colonels Ramon Caceres Jorquera and Edgar Benjamin Cevallos Jones, both of whom allegedly presided over Bachelet’s interrogation, are accused of killing him. Cevallos, 82, is being held in a hospital due to Alzheimer’s disease.”
There will undoubtedly be more to report next week. We’ll send a full-length blast on Friday, July 27th.