Cuba prepares to begin post-pandemic recovery; USA steps ups sanctions

"File:Havana, Cuba (46111312232).jpg" by Pedro Szekely from Los Angeles, USA is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0

Much was made in western media of the success of New Zealand, as a capitalist country, in tackling COVID-19 when they announced earlier this week that they would be lifting a number of internal restrictions. By contrast almost no attention has been given to the stunning success of socialist countries during this pandemic, in particular Cuba and Vietnam, in mainstream media.

Cuba’s Council of Ministers announced yesterday (11 June 2020) a series of measures for the first stage of recovery from the COVID-19 epidemic, planned as a gradual process with three phases.

Cuba is preparing to enter the first stage of recovery, with a view toward maintaining control of the COVID-19 epidemic within the country, achieved as a result of “the work of all institutions and our people’s participation as an active element in the battle [against the pandemic],” noted President Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, presiding an extraordinary session of the Council of Ministers yesterday morning, led by Prime Minister Manuel Marrero Cruz, where the plan of measures to be implemented in the three phases of the first stage of the country’s recovery was presented.

The Cuban President recalled, “The strategy to confront this period of the pandemic has been prepared, consisting of two stages. The first of these is, precisely, the post-COVID-19 recovery, which implies returning to the greatest possible normality.”

Over the next few days, he added, “Each and every one of the measures and actions will need to be ready to be implemented when we take this step,” noting that almost all municipalities and provinces have been free of new COVID-19 transmissions for a month and thus are in a position to return to normal.

The President commented that, as the country advances in the recovery, “In addition to returning to normal, we will work to prevent this disease from becoming endemic, which is possible.”

Prime Minister Manuel Marrero Cruz presented the measures included in the plan to Council of Ministers members, conceived in three phases of a first stage, precisely to “return to normal life in the country, in a gradual and asymmetric manner; to avoid a resurgence and develop capacity to confront one; while reducing vulnerability to long term effects of the disease.

The measures designed cover several areas, including health, tourism, labor and tax issues, foreign and domestic trade, transport, education, sport and culture. In addition, appropriate summer activities are being planned.

The Prime Minister stressed in conclusion that the plan guarantees “gradual progress toward normality, without haste, so that in the event of any situation that may arise, timely action can be taken.”

Cuba has not only proved adept at fighting the virus at home and has been a pillar of the international fight against the pandemic, sending thousands of doctors and medicine to every corner of the globe. Many in Europe, especially in Italy, are calling for Cuba medical volunteers to be awarded the Nobel Prize.

Despite the humbling and selfless sacrifice of the communist Caribbean island, the USA is using the pandemic as another opportunity to strangle the Cuban people into submission. As well as blockading external medical supplies, this week the Trump administration announced fresh sanctions on various Cuban financial institutions, companies and tourist facilities.

Challenge News Desk

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