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Kearney extends solidarity on 60th anniversary of Cuban revolution

11 January, 2019 - by Declan Kearney

Sinn Féin National Chairperson, Declan Kearney, has extended solidarity greetings to the Cuban people and government on the 60th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution.

Speaking today, the South Antrim MLA said:

"On 1st January 1959, following the victory of Che Guevara's forces at the Battle of Santa Clara the previous day, the Cuban dictator Fulgencio Batista fled Cuba marking the end of his regime in Cuba.

"Batista's flight paved the way for the Cuban revolution taking power.

"2019 will see events taking place all over the globe in celebration of both the anniversary of the Cuban revolution and its ongoing resilience.

"Events will also be held in Ireland and today in Belfast Mayor Deirdre Hargey will host an event at Belfast City Hall to mark this milestone.

"I was delighted to host the Cuban Ambassadors to both Ireland and Britain, Hugo Ramos and Teresita de Jesús Vicente Sotolongo at the Sinn Féin offices on the Falls Road earlier today. This is the very first time both the Cuban Ambassadors to Ireland and Britain have jointly visited the north. 

"During our meeting, the Ambassadors provided an update on the current situation in Cuba, the continuing negative impact of the US blockade on Cuba, and the new draft Cuban Constitution which will be put to the Cuban people in a referendum later this year.

"I provided the Ambassadors with an update on the political situation in Ireland, north and south, and on the deep, systemic political crisis in the north arising from the ongoing denial of democracy and rights.

"We also discussed the future relationship between Sinn Féin and the Cuban Government.

"Cuba continues to be an inspiration for freedom loving people all over the world.

"The Cuban Government has consistently demonstrated to the world that a nation's people are its greatest asset, and that it is the role of government to serve its people.

"In prioritising healthcare and education the Cuban Government has succeeded in virtually eradicating infant mortality and achieving almost one hundred percent literacy with the Cuban population.

"Cuba is also an exemplar in terms of its commitment to international solidarity through its practical support to countries throughout Latin America and Africa.

"Progressive people who are genuinely committed to the transformation of society have much to learn from the Cuban Revolution since 1959.

"For our part, Sinn Fein will continue to stand in solidarity with the Cuban people and against those who oppose them.

"On this occasion of the Revolution's 60th anniversary it is appropriate to recall the iconic words:

"Hasta la victoria siempre." Cuba Libre!

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