The presidents discussed prospects of further consolidating Russia-Cuba strategic partnership in different spheres as well as topical issues on the international agenda.
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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr President, friends,
I am really delighted to see you in Moscow again. Last year you were here on an official visit, but this is the first time you are here in your present capacity. I would like to congratulate you on being elected President.
Seeing that the history of Cuban-Russian relations is so well known there is no need to go into any details.
I would like to note though that this time your visit is that of an extended one: you have already been to several places. I hope all this was not only interesting but beneficial as well.
Our permanent contacts continue at the highest level as well as at a high level. We are actively cooperating and supporting one another on the international arena. Russia has always had a particularly good understanding for Cuba’s independent stand and sovereign policy.
I am pleased to note that last year we saw our trade start to grow, by 33 percent. Obviously, taking into consideration the conditions which Cuba finds itself in it is far from easy to solve various economic and social issues but on the whole you are coping with them well.
We are delighted to point out the further consolidation of Cuban statehood.
Wonderful to see you here in Moscow.
President of Cuba Miguel Diaz-Canel Bermudez (retranslated): Thank you very much, my friend President Putin.
We are very pleased to be in your country again and to meet with you. This visit is very important for us as a working visit.
A visit to Russia was my first foreign visit to the European region after I was elected President of the Republic of Cuba. I think it is symbolic for the world; it is a sign of the priority of our relations with Russia.
During this visit, we can share our thoughts on bilateral projects, which you proposed pursuing during your visit to Cuba. We are already seeing the first results, such as an increase in trade, as you just mentioned.
Army General Raul Castro asked me to convey his warm regards to you.
I am sincerely grateful to you for congratulating me on being elected President of Cuba.
I would like to confirm that the process our country is going through under the leadership of the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba and Army General, the advent of a new generation to leadership positions in our country shows the commitment of this generation to the revolution, and, as we indicated, it represents the generation of followers. This principle of continuity also includes our historical ties and expanded relations with Russia.
I take this opportunity to reopen the invitation to visit our country whenever you find it possible.
For us, the visit by Mr Medvedev in October meant a lot. It was a very interesting and positive visit marked by the fact that a top official visited our country in challenging times when the United States is escalating its aggression against Cuba. This visit showed that Russia and Cuba’s positions remain unchanged under threats from the United States. Also, we had the opportunity to evaluate the progress in implementing our projects during his visit. More ideas about new areas of cooperation and new projects appeared during the visit.
I would like to say that there are moments dedicated to Russia in our daily routine and feelings. Primarily, because we are closely monitoring the growing role that Russia is playing in order to break the superiority that the United States is trying to establish. We are also monitoring Russia’s progress and our projects with Russia on a daily basis.
I am grateful to you for the opportunity to carry out this working visit.
I am grateful for the invitation to take part in celebrating the 75th anniversary of Victory over Nazism next year, and I am here to confirm that we will attend this event. It is a holiday for Russia, but it is also a holiday for the entire world, mainly in terms of its importance to the entire world.
New areas of cooperation are opening up. We devoted part of our visit to gaining information about these issues. This is also why we visited the Baltic Shipyard in St Petersburg. Our Minister of Energy visited the Leningrad Nuclear Power Plant. We have ideas and proposals that we will work through together.
We are very happy to be in Russia and to be able to speak with you. We are very excited by how our projects and programmes are being implemented.
Vladimir Putin: Thank you very much for the invitation. I will definitely use it. Please convey my best wishes to Comrade Castro.