Venezuela & ALBA Weekly 3.20.2020 Cuba’s Humanitarian Example Fighting Coronavirus while US uses it as a regime change weapon

Cuba’s Humanitarian Example Fighting Coronavirus

The Independent: What coronavirus revealed about national mindsets across the world  – and how Cuba came out on top In a sign of true global solidarity, Cuba today allowed MS Braemer, a British cruise ship, to dock on its shores despite having at least five confirmed coronavirus cases on board and another 52 passengers displaying symptoms. The ship, with over 600 mainly British passengers, had no Cuban nationals on board but had requested help from both Cuba and the US.

Cuba acted without self-interest. The ship had been anchored in the Caribbean over the last five days as it frantically searched for a place to dock. Diplomats from the British Foreign Office had urged US officials to allow the ship to dock on American soil but were met with obstacles. Cuban officials instead accepted the request, stating that there must be “a shared effort to confront and stop the spread of the pandemic”. After all, these are still humans suffering, regardless of the passport they hold.

OnCubaNews: Cuba has medicines for thousands of possible cases of COVID-19  22 drugs produced in Cuba are part of the treatment to deal with the coronavirus outbreak, of which, he said, “we have for the treatment of thousands of people and we are preparing to significantly increase the production of those with less coverage.” “We think that we are capable of satisfying not only the possible demand in Cuba but also the requests that we are getting from other countries, and that are increasing day by day,” said Pimentel, who said that so far around 15 nations from different continents have already requested this and other Cuban medicines or have shown interest in them.

PeoplesDispatch: Cuba leads global efforts against COVID-19 in spite of US blockade

Countries from across the globe have asked Cuba for the recombinant human Interferon Alpha 2B, a drug developed in Cuba proven to be an effective against COVID-19. The drug has been produced in China since January 25 and, so far, has managed to effectively cure more than 1,500 patients from the coronavirus. It is one of 30 drugs chosen by the Chinese National Health Commission to combat the respiratory disease .It has prevented thousands of deaths in South Korea. Out of the 8,000 infected peoples, only 72 died. Germany has also bought these antivirals from the ChangHeber to fight the pandemic. Out of the 3,156 infected people, only 3 died.

After the effectiveness of the Cuban drug was known and popularized, the country has been flooded with purchase orders for Interferon Alpha 2B from across the globe. Several Latin American, Caribbean and European countries have requested medical aid from Cuba in order to fight the coronavirus outbreak.

United States uses coronavirus pandemic as a Regime Change weapon

TheGrayzone: Italy and UK rely on help from Cuba, China, Venezuela to fight coronavirus – as US steps up brutal sanctions Italy requested doctors from China, Cuba, and Venezuela to contain the coronavirus, while Cuba rescued a ship of British citizens. Meanwhile, US sanctions worsen the toll of the Covid-19 crisis in Iran and Venezuela. The Italian government lamented that “not a single EU country” has responded to its request for medical equipment — unlike China, which immediately helped.

Cuba’s Foreign Affairs Ministry declared in a statement, “These are times of solidarity, of understanding health as a human right, of strengthening international cooperation to face our common challenges, values that are key to the humanist practices of the Revolution and of our people.”

Vanessa Beeley: How Victims of the US’ “Maximum Pressure” Campaign Are Coping with Coronavirus As Western nations descend into a panic over the coronavirus pandemic, Americans are getting a taste of what it’s like for the millions who have been living under U.S. sanctions and warfare.The collective punishment meted out by U.S. sanctions inflicts damage on entire populations in prey nations, under the 1949 Geneva Convention, this is a war crime. To maintain such punitive economic pressures during a time of global health insecurity must be a supreme crime against humanity as defined by the United Nations International Law Commission in 1947.

PeoplesDispatch (Vijay Prashad): Sanctions against Iran, Venezuela and Cuba during a pandemic are cruel In the midst of a pandemic, one would expect that all countries would collaborate in every way to mitigate the spread of the virus and its impact on human society. One would expect that a humanitarian crisis of this magnitude would provide the opportunity to suspend or end all inhumane economic sanctions and political blockades against certain countries.When the United States continues its embargos against over 50 countries — but mostly against Cuba, Iran, and Venezuela — when there is a global pandemic afoot, what does this say about the nature of power and authority in our world? Sensitive people should be offended by such behavior, its mean spiritedness evident in the unnatural deaths that it provokes.

TheGrayzone (Leonardo Flores): US ramps up sanctions devastating Venezuela’s health sector as coronavirus spreads Since 2015, the US has sanctioned 49 oil tankers, 18 Venezuelan companies, 60 foreign companies and 56 airplanes (41 belonging to state airliner Conviasa and 15 belonging to state oil company PDVSA), but this is the first time they’ve gone after foreign oil companies. By targeting Rosneft Trading and TNK Trading (the two Rosneft subsidiaries), the United States makes it next-to-impossible for those firms to continue trading in Venezuela oil, as shipping companies, insurance companies and banks will refuse to work with them.

Were it not for the solidarity of China and Cuba, which sent testing kits and medicine, Venezuela would be woefully ill-equipped to handle the coronavirus. The sanctions are worsening an already dangerous situation, forcing Venezuela to spend three times as much for testing kits as non-sanctioned countries.

RadioHavanaCuba: U.S. prevents Venezuela from buying drugs to treat COVID-19 Venezuela’s Attorney General Tarek Saab denounced that coercive and unilateral measures imposed by the US prevent the purchase of drugs and supplies to confront COVID-19. The magistrate reaffirmed that in the midst of the situation the world is going through because of the pandemic, it is unacceptable that punitive actions be maintained, which constitute a massive violation of human rights.

IMF Rejects Venezuela’s Request for $5B in Virus Aid The International Monetary Fund rejected Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s request for US$5 billion in order to fight the coronavirus pandemic. An IMF spokesperson said the request can’t be considered because there was “no clarity” among its 189 member states on who it recognizes as Venezuela’s rightful leader: democratically elected President Maduro or U.S.-backed lawmaker Juan Guaido.“This is the most serious situation we have ever faced,” said President Maduro. The Venezuelan government imposed an indefinite national quarantine and has put in place—building on the local self-government (communes)—a process to distribute food and key supplies. All the institutions of the state are now involved in doing their part in helping “flatten the curve” and “break the chain” of contagion. But, because of the IMF loan denial, the country will have a harder time producing testing kits, respirators, and key medicines for those infected with the virus.

CommonDreams: ‘Literally Weaponizing Coronavirus’: Despite One of World’s Worst Outbreaks of Deadly Virus, US Hits Iran With ‘Brutal’ New Sanctions “How evil and heartless can this government get?” peace activist Medea Benjamin asked Wednesday after the State Department announced it would impose new sanctions on Iran as the country faces one of the worst coronavirus outbreaks in the world. The move by the U.S. government flew in the face of demands from advocacy groups and the Iranian government to suspend sanctions to ensure Iranians can access life-saving medication and supplies.


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