Christof Lehmann -
Dr. Christof Lehmann is the founder and editor of nsnbc. He is a psychologist and former independent political consultant on conflict, conflict resolution and a wide range of other political issues. In March 2013 he established nsnbc as a daily, independent, international on-line newspaper. He can be contacted at nsnbc international at email@example.com
Christof Lehmann (nsnbc) : Hardly noticed during the visit of U.S. President Barack Obama and delegates to Cuba, former Cuban President Fidel Castro met Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and awarded him the José Martí” National Award, Cuba’s highest honor. A message from the former revolutionary leader styled at least as much to Washington as to Caracas?
Maduro arrived in the Cuban capital Havana on Saturday, one day before the historic visit of U.S. President Barack Obama, U.S, Secretary of State John Kerry, U.S. Congressmen, and other high-level political and business representatives.
Maduro visited Cuba for a series of high-level talks on bilateral cooperation over the coming fourteen years within the framework of the 2016 Annual Cooperation Plan that is scheduled to last until 2030.
Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodrigues commented from Havana, saying "We were able to lay the foundations for the immediate design of concrete projects that will benefit the people of Cuba and Venezuela in different areas”.
Meetings focused on the Petrocaribe Economic Zone, urban and rural development, the Cuba – Venezuela public health program that has seen the deployment of thousands of Cuban medical doctors throughout Venezuela and boosted the education of Venezuelan MDs, and more.
Cuban President Raul Castro, the brother of the legendary Cuban revolutionary leader and ex-president Fidel Castro, awarded Maduro the José Martí” National Award.
Raul awarded Maduro with this highest Cuban honor in his official function as president, and maybe most importantly, shortly before Maduro visited Fidel. Maduro has been quoted as saying "I accept this award although I do not deserve it yet, I accept it as a commitment… to the Cuba of Fidel and the Venezuela of Chavez”.
One can say much about Fidel but he is as committed to global nuclear disarmament and peace as he ever was. The senior Statesman Fidel may not be as vigorous as he was when he was younger, but he is definitely as sly and skilled at sending diplomatic "messages” across as he ever was.
Considering the tensions between the United States and Venezuela it is noteworthy that Venezuela is one of the guarantors for the successful peace talks between the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia – Peoples’ Army (FARC-EP) and the Colombian government.
It is also noteworthy that U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry held meetings with peace delagates of the Colombian government and the FARC-EP in Cuba – on the sidelines of the Obama visit. Meetings that the U.S. State Department, the Colombian government and the FARC-EP described in very positive terms. Raul and Fidel awarded Venezuelan President Maduro with Cuba’s highest honors and sent a message that, arguably, was styled as much to Washington as it was styled to Caracas.
CH/L – nsnbc 23.03.2016