|Cholera and totalitarianism: A dangerous combination|
Meanwhile PAHO's only mention of tourists contracting cholera are 5 cases from Cuba.
The record in Cuba is clear. Cuba remains a totalitarian dictatorship without a free press and even international and accredited press bureaus are cowed into silence out of the justified fear that they would be ejected from the country for reporting negative news. The Cuban government is engaged in a practice of deceit that endangers lives.Between late July and early August 2013, five cases of cholera associated with a history oftravel to Cuba were confirmed, as follow:
On 24 July 2013, the National IHR Focal Point for Italy reported to WHO a confirmed case of cholera (V.cholerae serogroup O1 Ogawa) in a 47 year old male patient, with travel history to Havana from 23 June to 13 July of 2013. Relevant details of the case, including detailed travel history while in Cuba and further laboratory investigations were shared with competent local authorities in Cuba and WHO.On 9 August 2013, the National IHR Focal Point for Venezuela confirmed two cases of cholera (V. cholerae serogroup O1 Ogawa) in persons, a 51 year old male and 55 year old female, with history of travel to Havana, Cuba.On the same date, 9 August 2013, the National IHR Focal Point for Chile reported two cases of cholera, one laboratory confirmed (V. cholerae serogroup O1 Ogawa) and the other by epidemiological link, in persons returning from travel to Cuba.
The government of Cuba initially covered up the cholera outbreak. The story was broken by dissident journalists. Calixto Ramón Martínez Arias, the journalist who broke the story on the cholera outbreak, was arrested in September 2012 for disrespecting the dictatorship, and recognized by Amnesty International as a prisoner of conscience in January of 2013. He was finally released after spending nearly 7 months in prison in April of 2013. Unlike Michael Moore who continues to repeat Cuban government propaganda on the wonders of Cuban healthcare, Calixto reported on the actual situation on the ground and spent several months in prison.
|Calixto R Martínez Arias jailed nearly 7 months for breaking cholera story|