The kings carry the agenda of their visit to Cuba after 500 years of waiting

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Madrid, Nov 10 (EFE) .- After 500 years of waiting for a king of Spain to make a state visit to Cuba, the agenda of the trip of Felipe VI and Dona Letizia accumulates up to twenty acts and includes meetings with the president of the country, Miguel Diaz-Canel, and with representatives of civil society, but not with dissidents.

The half-century of the foundation of Havana that is commemorated this month has led to the end of this trip of the kings just the day after the general elections.

A fact that has provoked criticism from the leaders of the PP, Citizens and Vox to the Government for forcing Felipe VI and Queen Letizia to make the visit at this time and because they believe that it helps to guarantee the Cuban regime, a criticism which coincides with that of some groups of dissidents.

But the Executive, with its president, Pedro Sanchez, and Foreign Affairs Minister Josep Borrell, has rejected these criticisms, they have framed the visit in the 500 years since the foundation of Havana and stressed that it is a coincidence May this commemoration be almost on par with the elections in Spain.

The central events of that anniversary will be on November 16 and will be attended by leaders such as the president of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro, and that of Nicaragua, Daniel Ortega.

On that date the kings will no longer be in Cuba and, according to diplomatic sources, beyond the fact that the photo with them has been avoided, the actual visit (with acts in Havana and Santiago de Cuba) has been intended to take place a few days before to give it its own profile due to its historical and institutional character.

They also stress that the trip "is not a manifestation of support for anything" but a normalization of relations with a member of the Ibero-American community with whom there was an "anomaly"

Felipe VI and Mrs. Letizia will leave Madrid on Monday and arrive that same day in the Cuban capital, but will not start their official agenda until the following day, November 12, when the president, Miguel Diaz-Canel, will welcome them in the headquarters of the State Council.

In that same place he will offer an official dinner with about 150 guests, and the next day the kings will invite the president and other Cuban authorities to a dinner at the Palace of the Captains General.

There will be no meeting with dissidents of the Cuban regime, but there will be a meeting with representatives of the civil society of the island to also know their vision.

Although it has not been made public who will be present in that conversation, diplomatic sources point out that there will be, among others, intellectuals, self-employed and independent journalists.

The official agenda includes a floral offering on the 12th before the Jose Marti memorial and the presidency with Diaz-Canel of the act of signing the Country Cooperation Framework Agreement, which marks the roadmap of bilateral cooperation.

The kings will visit the exhibition organized by the Efe and Iberia Agency on the graphic history of Spain and Cuba at the Great Theater in Havana, and will attend a dance gala in which tribute will be paid to the Cuban dancer and choreographer Alicia Alonso, passed away last month.

In addition, the queen will move to the Gaspar Melchor de Jovellanos school-workshop, founded in 1992 with the support of the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation.

On Wednesday, November 13, it will be time for the kings to tour Old Havana and stop at places such as the Plaza de Armas, the Second Cape Palace and the Palace of the General Captains.

In this building, the historian Eusebio Leal will be awarded the Great Cross of Carlos III and a pastry chef with the Havana shield made in the Royal Tapestry Factory will be delivered to the city.

They will then offer a reception to the Spanish community in Cuba, which will be attended by a thousand people and the king will then meet with Spanish businessmen who have interests there to learn about their day-to-day problems.

The agenda of that day is completed with his attendance at two presentations, the book by Javier Mariscal on the 500 years of Havana and the work "The Guardian", a warrior figure made by Xavier Mascaro.

On the last day, on November 14, they will visit the Goya Self-Portrait given by the Prado Museum at the Museum of Fine Arts for a month to commemorate the founding of the Cuban capital.

In addition, they will visit the Molecular Immunology Center before moving to Santiago de Cuba, where diplomatic sources indicate that the most emotional act of the trip will take place by paying tribute to the Spaniards who fell in 1898 in the war against the United States.

In the Castillo del Morro "San Pedro de la Roca", Admiral Cervera and the Spanish sailors killed in the naval battle of July 3 of that year that marked the end of the Spanish presence in Cuba will be honored.

A similar tribute will be in the Loma de San Juan, where two days before the collapse of the Spanish fleet there was a fierce battle against the US troops that preceded the capture of the city.



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