Desde Dentro de Cuba.

Distribuido por Cuba Free Press, Inc. - http://www.cubafreepress.org

April 16, 1999. >

THE NEWS 'STEW' AS SEEN FROM CUBA By Tania Quintero, Cuba Free Press.

HAVANA - War continues in the Balkans. The number of refugees is increasing. Also deaths, illness and pain. The United States reconsidered its decision to bring 20 thousand Albanian-Kosovars to its naval base in Guantanamo on the southeastern portion of the island of Cuba. Europe will take some refugees. The European Union, with Germany at its helm, may negotiate the end of the conflict in Yugoslavia where the level of destruction is high and the victims come from several different ethnic groups: So far rockets don't have racial detectors. Koffi Aanan, the general secretary of the United Nations, is a great mediator and seems destined to find the solution that the world awaits. Aanan has prior experience in dealing with difficult characters.

London published the news: Spain can continue with the process of the extradition of Augusto Pinochet. The legalities may last one or two years but the case has become a precedent. Due to his age and health it is likely that the former dictator won't see the end of the proceedings. Perhaps God will grant him the rest that he didn't attain in life. Humanity welcomes the triumph of justice meantime.

In Latin America three countries stole the headlines: Colombia, with the hijacking of a passenger airplane (we hope for a happy ending). In Peru, where five ministers resigned leaving President Fujimori in a political bind. In Venezuela, where Hugo Chavez is trying to overpower his opposition and where angry opponents and supporters engaged in a fist fight outside the Congress building.

Over the last few days Pakistan has engaged in two nuclear experiments. But this did not prevent the trial of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto and her husband, both accused of corruption. Algeria readies itself for a controversial election where six of the seven candidates have just resigned and the one remaining, Bouteflika, doesn't have much support.

In New York, much maligned and persecuted Iranian author Salman Rushdie presented his latest book. The invited guests didn't know until the last minute where the event would take place. It is only logical: There's still a death sentence hanging over the death of the author of "Satanic Verses." The sentence was issued by the late Ayatollah Komeini.

In Santo Domingo, the capital of the Dominican Republic, the 25 members of the Association of Caribbean States (AEC) will be meeting from April 16 to the 18th at the second summit of the region's chiefs of state. The AEC was founded in Cartagena of the Indies, on July 24, 1994.

In Cuba, an immense fire which destroyed 7,000 hectares (17,500 acres) of timber in Guane, a municipality some 200 kilometers from Havana, is finally under control. More than 2,000 people were mobilized to fight the fire and while considerable damage was sustained by the flora, there was no loss of lives. In Camaguey and other provinces in the eastern portion of the island, the drought has started affecting food production and the population: The water containers are rapidly emptying. The solution could come in May, the month that marks the start of the rainy season in Cuba.

By Tania Quintero, Cuba Free Press.


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