Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC

Castro Speech Reported
PA0705053889 Havana International Service in Spanish 0020 GMT 7 May 89

[Report by Pzequiel Perez Martin on speech by President Fidel Castro at the
Plaza de la Revolution Major General Serafin Sanchez Valdivia in Sancti
Spiritus Province on 6 May--passages within quotation marks recorded]

[Text] Fidel Castro spoke at the inauguration of almost 500 social and
economic works in Sancti Spiritus Province today.  He spoke at the Plaza de
la Revolution Major General Serafin Sanchez Valdivia.  Fidel Castro spoke
before thousands of Sancti Spiritus residents for an hour.  He recalled
that he spoke in that province for the first time in January 1959 when he
was heading to the capital a few days after the triumph of the Cuban
Revolution, and also at the ceremony on 26 July 1986 when Sancti Spiritus
province was chosen as the site to commemorate the anniversary of the
Moncada attack.  That occasion in 1986 was one of the last times the CIA
planned one of its many attacks against our president.  This was revealed
in the television series, "The CIA War Against Cuba."

During his 1-hour speech today, Fidel Castro referred to the agricultural
achievements in the Sancti Spiritus Province and to the current efforts to
improve agricultural production even more.  He also praised the efficiency
of workers in that province, particularly those who work at the Uruguay
Sugar Mill, one of the largest in the country, which has produced 210,000
tons of sugar during the current sugar harvest.  This is a remarkable
production rate, which is as high as the production rate for the entire
Pinar del Reio Province.

Fidel Castro said it is encouraging to see that the country has highly
productive workers.  He specifically referred to some of the great
agricultural advancements in Sancti Spiritus and to some of the plans that
are under way.  He mentioned a major dairy project.

[Castro] "A major dairy project will begin this year.  In a few months, in
1989, the funds will be available to build 150 dairy farms in Sancti
Spiritus Province [words indistinct].  We believe this project will be
completed within 5 to 7 years."

Fidel Castro told thousands of Sancti Spiritus residents that what
impressed him the most was not what the people in that Cuban central region
have accomplished but the idea they are projecting.  He stressed that due
to the fast work pace and enthusiasm of the people of Sancti Spiritus,
great progress should be made in the construction field.

Fidel Castro also mentioned the great plans to develop tourism in Cuba,
specifically in Sancti Spiritus Province.  He also referred to
health-related tourism, which is gaining more and more international

[Castro] "We have been developing tourism throughout the country.  We also
want to promote tourism in this province, not only in this city, which has
many attractions as an old city with many architectural treasures that we
must cherish and preserve [words indistinct] internationally famous, has
been declared a patrimony of mankind by the UNESCO.  This province is very
attractive for international tourism.  Its beaches are excellent and we
plan to develop the beaches of Sancti Spiritus to the maximum.  We also
plan to develop the Valley of [name indistinct].  I believe that this
province will become a major source of foreign exchange for the country.
We are going to study ways to [words indistinct] source of foreign exchange
income.  We will take advantage of its attitude and [word indistinct], and
we will combine domestic use and international tourism.  We have not made
any final decision on this, but we are thinking of ways for this project to
become a kind of gold mine through which the country can obtain foreign
exchange.  Perhaps this could be accomplished through what we call
medicinal or medical tourism, which is growing in our country due to Cuba's
prestige in the medical field and the growing number of people that come
here every year to receive special medical treatment."

Fidel Castro said that great advancements have been made in the cultural
and defense fields.  Castro said that the people of Sancti Spiritus have
worked to make an impregnable bastion of their province.

Regarding the return of the glorious Cuban internationalists from Angola,
Fidel Castro said:

[Castro] "This province, as the entire country, has received
reinforcements.  Fresh, new troops have arrived--experienced and victorious
troops. [applause]  This makes it more difficult to crush our Revolution or
attack our country.  This is a fact, and whoever dares to do so will have
to pay a high price for his boldness. [applause]  This effort has
strengthened us.  We have strengthened our country and our Revolution in
the military field.  I repeat, the same spirit you have here is the same
spirit that exists throughout this country.  We are working very hard, and
I would say that we are working better than ever.  You are part of that
effort, and we congratulate you for the success you have achieved.  We hope
that Sancti Spiritus, the people of Sancti Spiritus,as well as all the
people of our homeland will have the future they deserve, and they surely
will.  Homeland or death, we will win!"