Human Rights in Cuba

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December 2012
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Spanish businessmen in Cuba ask Iberia not to drop Havana route

Havana, Dec 18, 2012 (EFE via COMTEX) —

The association representing the more than 360 Spanish firms with

operations in Cuba asked Iberia and 's government Tuesday

for the carrier to reverse its decision to eliminate service between

Havana and Madrid.

In letters to Iberia chief Antonio Vazquez and Spanish Development

Minister Ana Pastor, the association expressed its "deep concern" about

the upcoming suspension of Iberia flights between Spain and Cuba.

"We know the elimination of this and other routes to the Caribbean will

have a negative effect on our productive activities as well as on the

growing and, right now, very profitable economic relations between the

Iberian Peninsula and the island (Cuba)," the letters said.

The business group recalled that Spain is the island's third-largest

trade partner and the largest in the , while noting that,

despite the recession, Spanish sales to Cuba grew by 9.5 percent in 2011.

Spain's minister of industry, energy and , Jose Manuel Soria,

said last week it is "unacceptable" that to fly from Spain to Havana one

has to go through London, and asked Iberia to keep its routes to Latin


In his opinion, Iberia ought to continue offering its service on routes

to Latin America because this market is very important for Spain and for

the airline, and there is absolutely "no reason" to lose it. EFE

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