Cuban President Raul Castro challenged Latin American and Caribbean leaders on Tuesday to improve health care and education, telling a regional summit they have the natural resources to eradicate poverty but may lack the political will.

The Secretary General of the UN Ban Ki-moon has played tourists Monday in Old Havana, where he got his picture taken with children, joked with tourists and had his hair cut by a local hairdresser.

The secretary-general of the Organization of American States arrived in Cuba on Monday to attend a regional summit, in an unusual encounter 52 years after Cuba was kicked out of the regional bloc. Hugo Zela, Insulza’s chief of staff, said the OAS, which was formed in 1948, has no record of a secretary-general visiting Cuba.

The Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) approved a document in Havana, Cuba, that declared the region a peace zone. The announcement was made at a press conference by Abelardo Moreno, Cuba’s deputy foreign minister.

Cuba officially opened its new Mariel “megaport” on Monday, hoping the project will put it on the map as a regional shipping hub despite scant foreign investment and the US economic embargo. Cuban President Raul Castro and Brazil's Dilma Rousseff presided the ceremony.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon arrived early Monday in the Cuban capital to attend an upcoming summit of the Latin American and Caribbean Community of States (CELAC). Ban said he would like to hear from Latin American and Caribbean leaders during the meeting slated for Tuesday and Wednesday, and hold talks with Cuban President Raul Castro as well as other senior officials.

Back to top