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Guitarist completes first-ever paddleboard journey from Cuba to U.S.

By Michael Haskins KEY WEST, Florida (Reuters) – A Tennessee musician on Friday became the first paddleboarder to cross the Florida Straits between Cuba and the United States, making the 110 mile journey in 28 hours as his father watched from a support boat. Ben Friberg, 35, arrived in Key…

Snowden not aboard flight from Russia to Cuba: reports

MOSCOW (Reuters) – There was no sign that former U.S. spy agency contractor Edward Snowden was onboard a Russian plane bound for Cuba as it prepared to take off on Monday, a Reuters correspondent on the plane said. A flight attendant said Snowden was not on the plane and the…

Cuba nets billions each year by hiring out its doctors to Asia, Africa and Latin America

HAVANA — Cuba is out to boost its top export, an ever-more critical pillar of its economy. And it’s not sugar: hired-out Cuban doctors earn the Communist government over six billion dollars a year. Medical services exports “are now the leading source of hard-currency income for the nation, and have…

Guantanamo hunger strikers in lockdown after secret, pre-dawn cell raid

U.S. soldiers reportedly raided communal cellblocks at Guantanamo Prison in Cuba and hustled hunger striking inmates at gunpoint into single, maximum security cells on Saturday. According to the Miami Herald, prison authorities conducted the maneuver only hours after International Commitee of the Red Cross personnel left the island and under…

Former Georgw W. Bush spokeswoman Dana Perino raps response to Jay-Z’s Cuba song

Friday on Fox News, former White House press secretary Dana Perino vented her frustration with pop stars Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s decision to visit Cuba by composing a rap of her own. Re-dubbing herself “Tiny D-Day P,” Perino did her best, rhyming “white like Casper” with her dog’s name, Jasper, but…

Fidel Castro attends school ribbon-cutting in Cuba

Leaders inaugurating public works projects is a staple of Cuba, and a surprisingly spry-looking 86-year-old Fidel Castro has done it for the first time since stepping aside as president in 2006, media here reported on Thursday. The elder of the Castro brothers opened the Havana school for 140 children that…

‘Anti-government’ couple held after taking sons to Cuba

A US couple who had fled to Cuba after snatching their two young sons from the care of their grandmother are behind bars in Tampa, Florida, local law enforcement said Wednesday. A US airplane carrying Joshua Hakken, his wife Sharyn Patricia and their sons, aged two and four, landed in…

Cuba auctions cigars to raise money for health system

An auction of luxury cigar humidors in Cuba fetched $1.1 million, which will go toward the public health system, the state news agency said Sunday. The sale came at an international cigar festival attended by celebrities such as American actor Danny Glover and German tennis great Boris Becker, Prensa Latina…

Raul Castro promises end of an era in Cuba as he steps down as country’s president

Cuban President Raul Castro made the strongest statement yet that the island nation is preparing for a post-Castro era in announcing yesterday that he will step down in five years with plans to institute term limits. He also replaced his No. 2 with a younger Cuban who would be poised…

U.S. under pressure to let Cuba join Americas summit

Leaders from across the Americas launched talks here Saturday on expanding trade as the United States came under strong pressure to let Cuba attend future summits. Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, host of the Summit of the Americas, said Saturday it would be “unacceptable” to keep Cuba out of the…

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