Zim to deepen relations with Cuba

ZIMBABWE will forever be grateful for the support it received from Cuba during and after the liberation struggle, and the two countries should continue to deepen their bilateral relations, a senior Government official has said.

Speaking at commemorations of the death of Cuba’s former President Fidel Castro in Harare yesterday, acting Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Ambassador Rofina Chikava, said Harare and Havana enjoy excellent bilateral relations.

“Zimbabwe looks forward to the diversification of the existing relations to encompass cooperation in the economic, trade and investment sectors. We are hopeful that Zimbabwe’s participation at the 39th edition of the Havana International Fair and the Sixth Investment Forum that were held from November 6 to 11, 2023 will act as a catalyst in this direction,” Ambassador Chikava said.

She condemned Israel’s siege on Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and called for a permanent solution to the conflict.

“Regarding the ongoing conflict in the Middle East, we wish to reflect on the principles and purposes of the Charter of the United Nations, which call for the peaceful settlement of disputes,” she said.

“In this regard, Zimbabwe joins the world in calling for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and an immediate end to hostilities that have resulted in the untold suffering of civilians, healthcare and humanitarian workers.”

Charge d’affaires at the Cuban Embassy in Harare, Madam Yoisy Ford Garcia, called for unconditional lifting of sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe and Cuba by the United States and its allies.

The bond between Zimbabwe and Cuba, she said, has been strengthened because both countries have endured the adverse effects of the illegal blockade.

“Only as a united people can we overcome sanctions together because there is strength in unity. Empires try to divide us; they know that by fragmenting societies, they manage to weaken the masses. We cannot give in to imperial expansionist interests . . .  Cuba is with you against the illegal sanctions.

“Dear Cdes, on behalf of the Government and people of Cuba, the Cuban revolution, the legacy of Cde Fidel Castro Ruz and my own behalf, we denounce once again the illegal sanctions on Zimbabwe by some Western countries, the Economic, Commercial and Financial Blockage of the United States against Cuba. All kinds of sanctions should be lifted without conditions,” Madam Garcia said.

Speaking at the same occasion, Palestinian Ambassador to Zimbabwe Dr Tamer Almassri said the US and its allies have no moral right to teach Zimbabwe about democracy, the rule of law and freedom of speech.

Several diplomats stationed in Zimbabwe and other dignitaries attended the anniversary, which was held in the country for the first time.

In memory of President Castro, Ambassador Chikava and Madam Garcia laid a wreath at former President Castro’s plaque that is located at the corner of Kaguvi Street and Fidel Castro Road, formerly Charter Road.

The former president died on November 25, 2016.

As Cuba’s president, he provided support to the liberation struggle. He also ensured that Zimbabwe’s health sector benefitted from Cuban expertise.

Sunday Mail

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