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The State Department is paying a contractor more than $1 million to train 25 to 40 “emerging Cuban leaders.” The contractor isn’t allowed to travel to Cuba to recruit participants. And U.S. officials discourage the contractor from hiring “third-country nationals” to carry out the task. Instead, the contractor should work with “a partner organization,” the … Read more

Study abroad in Cuba flourished during Obama years

The number of U.S. students studying abroad in Cuba jumped from 1,633 in the 2013-14 academic year to 4,607 in 2017-18, according to a new State Department report. That was an increase of 182 percent, the second highest in Latin America and the Caribbean behind Grenada, according to the State Department’s 2019 Global Guide. Costa … Read more

Havana beats the South Pole

State Department employees sent on temporary assignments to Havana are given a $316 daily allowance for lodging, meals and incidentals. The daily allowance, known as a per diem, ranges from $149 to $244 outside the capital. The latest federal guidelines show the rates for 895 cities. The top three were Valencia, Spain; $729; Edinburg, Scotland, … Read more

USAID plans to spend up to $3 million to investigate Cuban doctors

The U.S. Agency for International Development is offering up to $3 million to organizations that would “investigate, collect, and analyze information related to human rights violations – including forced labor – of Cuban medical personnel exported overseas.” USAID on Monday stated: The Cuban regime exploits its medical professionals, teachers and other workers, using them to … Read more

Big bucks for “battle of ideas”

The U.S. government spent $475,035,876 on democracy promotion projects targeting Cuba from 1990 through 2018, records show. The top three recipients were: Grupo de Apoyo a la Democracia, with $39,769,619 International Republican Institute, $37,716,506 Pan-American Development Foundation, $36,961,556 Records show the names of the organizations that received a total of $363,725,255. See full list. The … Read more