Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev is making an official two-day visit to Cuba in order to renew military and commercial ties between the two nations and to publicly support the communist regime as it faces escalating pressure from the Trump administration.
According to Cubaâs state-controlled newspaper Granma, Medvedev will arrive on Thursday afternoon and will immediately reunite with President Miguel Diaz-Canel and former leader Raul Castro.
The newspaper also said that Medvedevâs visit to the island represents the highest profile Russian tour since that of President Vladimir Putin five years ago, being âsymbolically important.â
Professor of government at the American University William LeoGrande told the Miami Herald that this visit also represents an implicit message to the Trump administration.
âThe symbolism is that the U.S. strategy of economic strangulation will fail because Cuba can turn elsewhere for support – just as it did during the Cold War. Thatâs a message to the United States, but also to the Cuban people that they should not despair because they have other friends abroad,â he said.
On Twitter, political analyst Carlos Alberto Montaner pointed out that Cubaâs main interest in this visit is its desperate need for fuel, considering that the Venezuelan crisis and the US sanctions have caused a significant shortage.
âBasically, the Cuban regime will ask for its Russian ally to provide more fuel to end with the crisis it is currently experiencing. However, it is quite difficult for Moscow to help Havana in this matter.â
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