U.S.-Cuba News Brief 06/26/2020

June 26, 2020

Dear Friends,

We hope you have been enjoying the first days of summer and staying safe and healthy. We are celebrating Pride Month throughout June and invite you to check out our posts on CDA’s Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook pages. In Cuba, a group of artists, musicians, writers, and over 2,377 others including Cimafunk, Daymé Arocena, and Haydée Milanés have signed a petition to create awareness about, reflect on, and increase solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community in Cuba. The petition may be accessed here.

Cuba experienced a significant decrease in the number of active COVID-19 cases, with only 58 patients at the time of publication. This week, Cuba’s Ministry of Public Health released a document with detailed plans for the three post-COVID-19 recovery phases. Most of Cuba entered the first phase last Thursday.

This week, in Cuba news…

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U.S.-Cuba News Brief 06/18/2020

June 18, 2020

Dear Friends,

We hope you and yours are safe and healthy.

We’re delivering our weekly news roundup a bit early this week because the CDA office will be closed Friday, June 19 in observance of Juneteenth, an annual holiday which commemorates the emancipation of enslaved Black people in the U.S. This year, CDA will reflect on this pivotal moment in U.S. history while recognizing that the fight for freedom of Black people in our country is an ongoing one.

This week marked the three year anniversary of President Trump’s announcement in Miami of a National Security Presidential Memorandum restricting travel to and trade with Cuba. In a press statement, CDA Executive Director Emily Mendrala said “It has been three years since President Trump began dismantling U.S. policies of engagement with Cuba. Today, travel, trade, and diplomatic engagement with Cuba are exponentially more difficult than they were three years ago.” She also remarked that these policies are especially cruel during the COVID-19 pandemic and out of touch with the reality of the island. Read the full statement here.

Cuba experienced a decrease in COVID-19 cases, with 188 active positive cases at the time of publication. Today, the whole country, except for Havana and Matanzas provinces, entered the first phase of post-COVID-19 recovery, according to an informative note by the Council of Ministers in Cuba.

This week, in Cuba news…

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U.S.-Cuba News Brief: 06/12/2020

June 12, 2020

Dear Friends,

We hope you and yours are safe and healthy.

This week, we are featuring Nancy Morejón’s poem “Príncipe Negro Para George Floyd” honoring George Floyd. Nancy Morejón is a winner of Cuba’s National Prize for Literature (2001) and the former director of the Caribbean Studies Center at Casa de las Américas in Havana. The poem in the original Spanish and an English translation by Ivette Romero may be accessed on the Repeating Islands website.

Cuba experienced an increase in COVID-19 cases this week, and, as of the time of publication, the country currently has 245 active cases. There have been no reported deaths in over a week. Yesterday, Cuba’s President Miguel Díaz-Canel announced a three-phase reopening plan for the island.

This week, in Cuba news…

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U.S.-Cuba News Brief 06/05/2020

June 5, 2020

Dear Friends,

We hope you and yours are safe and healthy, and are taking time to care for one another this week.

CDA condemns the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and of the many other Black persons whose lives have been tragically taken by racism, hatred and police brutality in the United States. CDA expresses its solidarity with #BlackLivesMatter and #LasVidasNegrasImportan and with those who continue standing up against injustice in the United States, in the Americas, and throughout the world. You may read our full statement in English and Spanish here.

CDA friends El Club del Espendrú, a Cuban collective of artists, intellectuals, and Black activists, released a statement today in support of the activists in the U.S. and across the world fighting for racial justice calling the fight against racism “one of the great battles faced by humanity, as it cuts across every society and shares all forms of exploitation.” The statement also denounced sanctions that deny basic resources to the Cuban people, which compound challenges.

As El Club del Espendrú notes, the deep socioeconomic inequalities that have historically and disproportionately faced Black persons in the U.S. and around the world have only been exacerbated during COVID-19 times.

Cuba experienced an increase in COVID-19 cases this week, and, as of the time of publication, the country currently has 200 active cases and saw one death.

This week, in Cuba news…

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