Castros sixdecade rule nears end in Cuba

first_imgCuban President Raul Castro (L) talks with First Vice-Presidente Miguel Diaz-Canel during the First Annual Session of the Cuban Parliament at the Convention Palace in Havana. AFP file photoCuba is poised for the end of an era on Thursday as President Raul Castro steps down, formally handing power to his long-time deputy Miguel Diaz-Canel-and thereby ending his family’s six-decade grip on the island.The silver-haired Diaz-Canel, 57 — a top Communist Party figure who has served as first vice president since 2013 — will become the island’s first leader born after the 1959 revolution, and the first in 60 years who is not named Castro.Between them, father of the nation Fidel and his younger brother Raul made the Caribbean island a key player in the Cold War and helped keep communism afloat despite the collapse of the Soviet Union.Raul, now 86, has been in power since 2006, when he took over after illness sidelined Fidel, who seized power in the revolution.Diaz-Canel, who has spent years climbing the party ranks, was named the sole candidate for the presidency on Wednesday.He will formally be confirmed as the country’s leader at roughly 9:00 am (1300 GMT) Thursday-the anniversary of the 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion, when Fidel Castro’s forces defeated 1,400 US-backed rebels seeking to overthrow him.Havana has long hailed the showdown as American imperialism’s first great defeat in Latin America.It is also the day before the new president’s 58th birthday.In Raul’s footstepsDiaz-Canel, who some say bears a passing resemblance to American actor Richard Gere, is a fan of The Beatles whose penchant for wearing jeans has set him apart in Havana’s corridors of power.Although he has advocated fewer restrictions on the press and a greater openness to the internet, he also has a ruthless streak, with harsh words for Cuba’s dissidents and the United States.Crucially, he will remain under the watchful eye of Castro, who will continue to serve as the head of Cuba’s all-powerful Communist Party.Once sworn in, Diaz-Canel will be tasked with pursuing reforms begun by Castro to open up Cuba’s economy to small private entrepreneurs and reach a rapprochement with its Cold War arch-enemy, the United States.In 2015, Havana and Washington renewed diplomatic ties, with then president Barack Obama making a historic visit to the island a year later.But, steps towards a normalization of ties have been severely curtailed since Donald Trump arrived in the White House last year.Continuity over changeDiaz-Canel will also inherit a youthful population hungry for change on the Caribbean island-one of the world’s last outposts of Communism since the collapse of the Soviet Union.Cuba watchers and domestic analysts say he will favor continuity over change in the early days of his presidency, however.As they began their momentous two-day meeting Wednesday, the 605 delegates of the National Assembly cast their votes for the new Council of State, which counts 31 members and whose head automatically becomes president.“I have the honorable mission of putting forward comrade Miguel Mario Diaz-Canel Bermudez as president of the Council of State,” commission president Gisela Duarte told assembly delegates, effectively ending any suspense over the identity of Cuba’s new leader.Delegates immediately broke into applause and the two men rose to share an embrace as Cuba’s two other vice presidents, both veterans of the revolution, looked on from the row behind.Thursday’s session will simply formalize the vote.last_img read more

Whats Coming to Amazon Prime Video in January 2019

first_img ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15 Ushering in the New Year, Amazon Prime Video is bringing in a slate of original content, with new movies and television shows including “Beautiful Boy,” the second season of “Informer,” and the new season of animated show “The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle” coming to the streaming service this month.Accompanying these are classics like “Jane Eyre” and the Gene Wilder version of “Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory.” In the midst of awards season, those who didn’t catch Bo Burnham’s widely applauded “Eighth Grade” in theaters now have a chance to watch it at home, along with another Debra Granik’s acclaimed feature, “Leave No Trace,” about a father and daughter duo who live in the Oregon woods.Find the full list of titles coming to Amazon Prime Video below.Jan. 1A Beautiful Mind Alpha DogBrazilBreaking Big, Season 1First Civilizations, Season 1Frontline, Season 36GI Jews: Jewish Americans in World War IIGoing to WarJane EyreNova Wonders, Season 1ReprisalRwanda: The Royal TourThe Art of the ShineThe Jazz AmbassadorsWilly Wonka & the Chocolate FactoryJan. 3Leave No TraceJan. 4Beautiful BoySherlock GnomesJan. 11Informer, Season 1Jan. 12Final ScoreJan. 13Eighth GradeJan. 16The DebtJan. 18The Grand Tour, Season 3Jan. 19Fahrenheit 11/9Jan. 25Escobar: Paradise LostFour More Shots Please!, Season 1Jan. 29Endeavour, Season 5Coming in January, date TBDThe Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle, Season 1bcenter_img Popular on Variety last_img read more

Foodies affair

first_imgTreat yourself with some exotic food brought  to you by The Imperial this month. Enjoy a lavish Sunday brunch at 1911 with 7 Wonders of the World, featuring specialties from the regions of seven wonders across the globe on 17, 24 and 31 August. Nostalgia at 1911 Brasserie presents Coffee, Chocolate and Cognac from 21 to 31 August. It gives you relaxing cup of coffee, finest cognacs and flavoured white and dark chocolates that calls for an unrivalled dining experience. To top it all superb wine list accompanied by sinful deserts is designed to cast a spell, making your evening with us an affair to remember. Daneill’s Tavern host the Home Style Food from 25 August to 7 September. Savour comforting recipes to summon memories of cosy meals at home with family. The Chefs have put together some all time favourite home-style specialties this season that will surely remind you of your grandma’s kitchen. So hurry up and book your table.last_img read more

Madhyamik results to be out today

first_imgKolkata: The West Bengal Board of Secondary Education (WBBSE) will announce the results of Madhyamik examination 2018 on Wednesday. The results will be declared in a Press conference at the Board office in Salt Lake at 9 am. A senior official of WBBSE informed that the results can be accessed from as many as eleven websites, including www.webresults.in/wbbse.org, examresults.net/wb, westbengal.indiaresults and exametc.com, from 10 am onwards. Apart from this, candidates can also type WB 10, followed by their roll number and send it to 54242 or 5888 to receive their marks.It may be mentioned that a total of 11,21,921 candidates had appeared for Madhyamik examination this year, which is 31,075 higher than 2017. Among the examinees, 6,21,366 were girls, while 4,81,555 were boys. There were 2,811 centres in which the examination was held from 12 to 21 March.The results are being declared within 77 days of the completion of the examination.last_img read more

Shuvaprasannas annual art fair cultural fest on its way

first_imgArts Acre Foundation announced on Wednesday the second edition of its annual festival – Art Haat, 2017 – organized in association with Emami Art is going to be held at the Arts Acre Museum of Bengal Modern Art and International Centre for Creativity and Cultural Vision at Rajarhat from November 11 to 14. Eminent artist, Shuvaprasanna, acclaimed artists, Himmat Shah and Prabhakar Kolte, filmmaker, Gautam Ghose and prominent artists from Germany were present at the inauguration. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThis year, the majority of the stalls at the Art Haat festival are being given to the emerging artists who are full-time practitioners of fine arts like painting and sculpture while some stalls are reserved for various handicrafts. Besides the fair, there will be performances at the open-air amphitheatre every evening during this four-day event. Last year, it was a mix of Baul and other forms of folk music like Rainbenshe, Chau, and traditional dance of Purulia and performances by Belgian Bluegrass band named Louvat Brothers. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThis year there will be a performance by Folks of Bengal – a folk band performing songs and instrumental, folk songs by Swapan Basu, Raibenshe – traditional acrobatic dance form of Bengal, Chau – Dance form of Purulia and contemporary dance performance by Bittu Mondal and group.Present on the occasion, Shuvaprasanna said, “This is the second edition of Art Haat and I am extremely hopeful about its success. Last year, it was an interesting spread of experience. We have extremely talented artists across the city and state who have participated in this year’s art fair and festival and it is going to be big this year. From the last year’s success, we have been inspired to increase the number of stalls to 65 against last year’s 55. We will continue to hold this festival to exhibit the artistic excellence of our city and the country”. Different forms and types of affordable painting, sculpture, folk art, crafts, organic clothes, designer jewellery and handloom products would be exhibited at this unique fair. “The idea is to enable every family to carry back a piece of art with them. We have also tried to offer each artist and artisan an inexpensive platform for selling their creations”, added Shuvaprasanna. This year, the fair also offers delectable food items from K C Das, Biskfarm and Mukhorochak. They will be offering their delicacies besides food from the in-house cafeteria. There will also be stalls selling popular street foods in the festival. Arts Acre is the brainchild of the renowned artist Shuvaprasanna which has developed into a sprawling facility for fine arts. It is a self-contained mini-city for artists and art lovers providing world-class facilities for creating a model platform for the practice and propagation of art, craft and culture.last_img read more