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Issue #1459      16 June 2010

Successful visit to Perth by Cuban Foreign Affairs Minister

On his first visit to Western Australia on Monday June 7, the Cuban Foreign Affairs Minister Bruno Rodriguez-Parrilla addressed almost 100 people at a public meeting organised by the Australia-Cuba Friendship Society, ACFS Perth Branch. The meeting was held at the University of Western Australia Social Sciences Lecture Theatre. The Foreign Minister was accompanied by the Cuban Ambassador to Australia, His Excellency Abelardo Curbelo-Padron.

The evening was opened with a moving Welcome to Country by Aboriginal leader Kim Collard. Krishna Sen, Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, then welcomed the Minister on behalf of the University before handing over to the MC, ACFS Perth Branch Secretary Elizabeth Hulm who talked about the history of the society in Perth and its current work and campaigns. She took the opportunity on behalf of the Society in Perth to express to the Cuban Minister and the Ambassador to Australia the support and solidarity of the Society with the heroic Cuban people and their commitment to promote awareness of the Cuban Revolution and to strengthen the friendship between the peoples of Australia and Cuba.

His Excellency Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla greeted the Society and spoke of the strengthening relationship between Cuba and Australia and of the disappointing lack of change in relations with the US under the Obama administration.

Branch President Vinnie Molina presented the Minister with a painting by local Aboriginal artist, Robin Kickett that depicts the ancient Campsites and waterways of the area. He also spoke about the campaigns undertaken by the society to demand the lifting of the US blockade on Cuba and for the freedom of the Cuban Five. A short documentary of the Society at work produced by society member Helmut Dobelstein as a gift to the Minister was previewed.

The Minister then took the opportunity to mingle with members of the Society and supporters at the function in an informal way before joining the members for a group photo.  

Next article – Government eyes Sydney’s Moore Park for development

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