Raul Castro Bids Farewell to Russian President Vladimir Putin

Cuban President Raul Castro bid farewell to his Russian peer, Vladimir Putin, at Havana’s Jose Marti International Airport on Friday, after holding official talks at the Palace of the Revolution.

The over-12-hour visit by the Russian statesman to Cuba allowed strengthening ties between the two countries, as shown by the signing of ten legal instruments aimed at reinforcing collaboration in energy, culture, education, the peaceful use of outer space and healthcare, among other sectors.

Raul Castro also awarded Putin the Jose Marti Order, the country’s highest distinction, established in 1972 and granted to Cuban citizens, foreigners and heads of State or Government for their great deeds in favor of peace and humanity, among other merits.

After the official talks and the signing of ten agreements, the two statesmen gave a press conference, in which they stressed the excellent state of bilateral relations.

Raul Castro described the Russian government’s decision to cancel 90 percent of Cuba’s debt to the former Soviet Union as great generosity from the Russian people to the Caribbean island.

For his part, the Russian statesman welcomed the sincere friendship and mutual sympathy. He added that both countries are creating new conditions to develop bilateral relations.

Putin began in Cuba a tour of Latin America that will also take him to Argentina and Brazil. In the latter, he will attend the 6th Summit of the BRICS Group (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).

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