WASHINGTON: VIDEO: Cuba’s Flag flies over their Embassy signalling end of post-Cold War era of Us-Cuba Relations ‘

#AceNewsReport – WASHINGTON (AP) July.20: Cuba’s blue, red and white-starred flag was hoisted Monday at the country’s embassy in Washington in a symbolic move signaling the start of a new post-Cold War era in U.S.-Cuba relations.

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez presided over the flag-raising ceremony hours after full diplomatic relations with the United States were restored at the stroke of midnight, when an agreement to resume normal ties on July 20 took effect. Earlier, without ceremony, the Cuban flag was hung in the lobby of the State Department alongside those of other countries with which the U.S. has diplomatic ties.

U.S. and Cuban diplomats in Washington and Havana had also noted the upgrade in social media posts.

@AceNewsServices

Ace Worldwide News

#cuba, #diplomatic-relations, #minister-bruno-rodriguez, #symbolic-move

WASHINGTON WRAP: ‘ NEWS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED FROM CAPITOL HILL ‘

#AceNewsServices – WASHINGTON:Dec.22 – Well last round-up of Washington news you may have missed before Christmas descends on all of us. This weeks wrap is off course dominated by: SONY HACK and was it or was it not North Korea, China or just some great big publicity stunt as many are starting to say: Well all news is good news even when its bad so here goes for another week:

SONY HACK:

Obama: Sony hacking attack not an act of war by North Korea  President Obama says in an interview broadcast Sunday morning that he did not think the Sony Pictures hack was not an act of war by North Korea.  http://ow.ly/GePS9

McCain: Sony hack ‘a new form of warfare’  “We need to react and react vigorously,” the Republican senator said.  http://ow.ly/Gf13H

Intel chairman slams Obama for slow Sony response  “Saying ‘aloha’ and getting on the plane to Hawaii is not the answer,” Rogers said.  http://ow.ly/Gf0xN

Sony hack a ‘wake-up call’ for US, cybersecurity expert says  “You’ve got to invest in a defensible architecture,” Major General Brett Williams said. http://ow.ly/GfgCP

Will US add North Korea to list of state sponsors of terrorism?  The United States is weighing whether to put North Korea back on its list, Obama said.  http://ow.ly/GeZ8A

Sony lawyer: ‘The Interview’ will be distributed  A top Sony lawyer stressed the movie studio will release the film through some platform. http://ow.ly/Gfakt

Iran watching Obama’s moves, Graham says  Graham said Obama must respond “forcefully” to Sony cyberattack.  http://ow.ly/GfcDl

NYPD SHOOTINGS:

Graham: Dems’ tone ‘incites crazy people’  The senator said the shooter alone is to blame for the deaths of two New York officers. http://ow.ly/GfaZ1

NY Democrat: Unfair to blame mayor, Holder for NYPD shootings  Rep. Gregory Meeks said de Blasio and Holder have been trying “to bring the city together.” http://ow.ly/Gf9X8

NAACP chief: Don’t blame Dems for NYPD shootings  Cornell William Brooks said criticism of New York’s mayor and Eric Holder are unfair. http://ow.ly/Gf8ox

CUBA:

Rubio blasts Obama’s Cuba decision  The Florida Republican denounced the president’s actions on three Sunday shows.  http://ow.ly/GfdOF

Senators split on Obama’s Cuba strategy  Sens. Ron Johnson and Ben Cardin debated Obama’s move to normalize relations.  http://ow.ly/Gf3ZS

GUANTANAMO BAY:

Obama on Gitmo: ‘I’m going to be doing everything I can to close it’  Obama stopped short of declaring that he’d succeed in closing the controversial facility.  http://ow.ly/GeXQt

McCain: Obama acting in a ‘most imperial fashion’  “This is a president who ran on an open and transparent presidency,” the Arizona Republican said.  http://ow.ly/Gf2rM

Racial Tensions:  

Obama ‘impatient’ on racial progress in US  Obama said he recognizes that “most Americans have good intentions.” http://ow.ly/Gf65v

US Election 2016:

Former DNC chief: Rubio is ‘done’ for 2016  “I think Jeb does some very interesting things,” Howard Dean said. http://ow.ly/GffGQ

So that just about wraps it up in Washington for another year. I will produce my thoughts in Washington before New Year ……. So stay tune… ED.

#ANS2014 

#capitol-hill, #china, #cuba, #cyber-security, #democrats, #gitmo, #guantanamo-bay, #iran, #mccain, #north-korea, #obama, #racial, #republicans, #sony, #us-election-2016

CUBA: ‘ CASTRO SAYS WE ARE READY TO WORK WITH US AGAINST EBOLA ‘

#AceNewsServices – CUBA – October 19 – Cuba is ready to work with the United States in the fight to contain Ebola, former leader Fidel Castro said on Saturday.

Cuba said it would send 460 doctors and nurses to West Africa to help contain the disease, a move that Secretary of State John Kerry praised on Friday.

In an article published in the Communist Party daily Granma on Saturday, Castro said that his country is pleased to be working with the U.S., the Associated Press reports
“With pleasure we will cooperate with U.S. personnel in that task,” Castro wrote in the paper about the communist-led Caribbean island.

Castro added, however, that the cooperation would not be an attempt to seek peace between the two countries, which have long been at odds, but “for the peace of the world.”

He did not go into details on what form the partnership during the Ebola fight would take.

Castro said that work to curtail the disease is “the greatest example of solidarity that a human being can offer.”

The U.S. is sending hundred of soldiers to train healthcare workers and set up clinics.

Source: AP – Contribution The Hill 

#ANS2014

#cuba, #ebola

‘ Cuban Court Sentences 74-Year-Old Canadian CEO to 15-Years in Prison for Bribery in a Travesty of Justice’

#AceNewsServices – CUBA – September 28 – A Cuban court has sentenced 74-year-old Canadian auto-mobile executive Cy Tokmakjian to 15 years in prison for bribery and other economic and corruption-related charges, his company, the Tokmakjian Group, announced on Saturday, describing the case as “absurd” and a “travesty of justice.”

' Sentenced to 15-Years in Prison for Bribery '

‘ Sentenced to 15-Years in Prison for Bribery ‘

His two aides received sentences of 12 and 8 years, the Ontario-based transportation firm said in a statement.

' Prison where is being held prior to sentencing '

‘ Prison where is being held prior to sentencing ‘

The National Post reported in June that prosecutors were are seeking 15 years in prison for a Canadian businessman who was arrested in a high-profile crackdown on corruption, Cuban authorities said Monday.

The trial of Cy Tokmakjian, president of an automotive and transportation company, the Tokmakjian Group, concluded June 12 and a ruling is to be announced “in the coming days,” according to an announcement published by Communist Party newspaper Granma and other official media.

The case is being watched closely by the foreign business community in Cuba. President Raul Castro’s government has said there is no place for graft in the country, although foreign executives say gifts or cash payments are often demanded in business dealings conducted with low-paid government officials.

The company’s Cuban offices were raided in 2011 in an anti-graft investigation and round $100 million worth of the company’s assets were seized.

#ANS2014

#canada, #canadian, #cuba

‘ Russia and Cuba Soviet Spy Base to Re-Open Putin Denial Reports Say Different ‘

#AceWorldNewsMOSCOW – July 17 – Russian President Vladimir Putin has refuted reports that Russia and Cuba agreed to resume work at the Soviet-built intelligence facility in Lourdes near Havana, Cuba.“No, it’s not true,” Putin answered a question during his meeting with reporters following the BRICS summit in Brazil.RT  

cuban-missile-crisis-over

“There is nothing to regret, we are capable of solving the challenges in the field of national defence without this component, there is nothing unusual here, we in agreement with our friends closed the work of this centre, we have no plans to resume work,” said Putin.

Reports of resumption of work at the USSR‘s largest electronic intelligence facility was published in Kommersant newspaper on Wednesday.

(VoA July 16 2014 ) Reported that Russia will reopen an intelligence base in Cuba that closed in 2001, according to Russian media reports on Wednesday.

The newspaper Kommersant claims an agreement to resume operations at the Lourdes base, which was once a leading source of Cold War-era electronic surveillance on the United States, was made during Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit to Havana last week.

Cuban Missile Base

The signals intelligence base located south of Havana opened in 1964 to spy on the U.S. during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Only 250 kilometers from the U.S. coast, it had radar capable of intercepting signals from a significant amount of U.S. territory, according to Kommersant.

In 2001, Putin ordered the base closed in a cost-cutting move, after repeated requests from the United States, the Russian paper said, citing sources close to the Kremlin.

The paper also quoted Raul Castro as saying that up to 75 percent of Moscow’s intelligence on the United States came from the base.  

#ANS2014 

#russia, #brics, #cold-war, #cuba, #havana, #kommersant, #moscow, #signals-intelligence, #soviet-union, #united-states, #vladimir-putin

` Five Taliban Detainees Exchanged for US Army Sergeant Will Spend a Year in Qatar ‘

#AceWorldNews – UNITED STATES – June 01 – Five Taliban detainees released in exchange for a US Army sergeant will spend a year in Qatar, AFP reports. US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel earlier credited Qatar and its emir with securing the sergeant’s release, who had been held in Taliban captivity for 5 years.

The five detainees transferred from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba had reportedly been officials in the Taliban regime driven out by the US-led invasion of Afghanistan and they remained influential, a Taliban source told AFP.

Taliban supreme leader Mullah Mohammad Omar called the prisoner swap a “big victory.”

RT – AFP

#ANS2014

#afghanistan, #chuck-hagel, #cuba, #guantanomo-baygitmo, #qatar, #taliban, #united-states

` Columbian Government and FARC Rebel Group Agree Plan to Deal with Illegal Drugs Trade ‘

#AceWorldNews – COLUMBIA – May 17 – The Colombian government and the FARC rebel group have agreed on a plan to deal with the South American country’s illegal drugs trade.

The deal is third in a six-point peace agreement being negotiated between the two sides in Cuba. FARC, which controls large areas of territory in rural Colombia, is believed to fund large amounts of its activity through the illegal drugs trade.

Last year, the Colombian government and the left-wing FARC group agreed to the first two points in the peace plan – land reform and political participation.

The details of Friday’s agreement will need to be discussed further by special commissions.

The peace talks were initiated by Colombian President Juan Manuel Carlos, who is seeking a second mandate in next week’s elections.

The civil war in Columbia has killed around 220,000 people over the past five decades.

#ANS2014

#columbia, #columbian, #cuba, #farc