August 30, 2014

Cuban ambassador bids farewell

A new Cuban ambassador will be assigned to Guyana within a few days, outgoing Cuban Ambassador to Guyana Raul Gortázar Marrero

Outgoing Cuban Ambassador to Guyana Raul Gortázar Marrero, President Donald Ramotar, and Foreign Affairs Minister Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett in discussion at the Office of the President on Wednesday

Outgoing Cuban Ambassador to Guyana Raul Gortázar Marrero, President Donald Ramotar, and Foreign Affairs Minister Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett in discussion at the Office of the President on Wednesday

said after paying a farewell courtesy call on President Donald Ramotar on Wednesday.

The diplomat is ending his four-year tenure at a high point in the two countries’ relations just as a significant number of Guyanese have returned from Cuba after completing seven or more years of studies in different fields.

The opportunity for Guyanese to pursue scholarships was made possible through a bilateral agreement between former President Bharrat Jagdeo and Cuban leader Fidel Castro that also catered for technical support in the construction of four diagnostic and treatment centres and a state-of-the-art eye care facility at Port Mourant.

The ophthalmology centre, manned by members of the Cuban medical brigade replaced a prior arrangement for Guyanese with eye ailments to benefit from all-expenses covered trips to Cuba for eye surgery. Guyana and Cuba share a 40-year relationship that has been built on the solid foundation of dynamic political dialogue, warm mutual respect and productive cooperation, the Government Information Agency (GINA) said.

Aside from the medical brigade, Ambassador Marrero made reference to collaboration in sport and agriculture, assuring that the Cuban government will continue to support Guyana’s development. “Nowadays, Latin America and the Caribbean are working in unison in this regard, because in unity, there is strength and once we have that strength, we can overcome,” Ambassador Marrero said.

In October last year, President Ramotar met incumbent Cuban President Raul Castro for the first time when he visited Cuba and discussed the bilateral programme of cooperation. The visit ended with agreements on the exemption of visa requirements for holders of diplomatic, official, and service passports, and cooperation in the areas of sport and health.

Guyana informed Cuba of its decision to exempt Cuban nationals from visa requirements to enter and remain in Guyana for periods not exceeding 90 days for the holders of all categories of passports.

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