Subject: Anniversary of Cuban Medical Brigade Marked in Timor Leste

also Cuba Helps East Timor Literacy

Anniversary of Cuban Medical Brigade Marked in Timor Leste

Havana, CAN-RHC) The 5th anniversary of a Cuban medical brigade providing services in East Timor was marked by health authorities in that south-eastern Asian nation.

Agapito Da Silva, director general of the country's Health Ministry, highlighted the efforts of the Cuban medical mission and the presence of more than 230 specialists from the sector from the island, reports Granma newspaper.

The official said the Cuban experts enjoy great prestige and are highly valued in the communities and facilities where they provide their services in a total of 27 medical fields.

Da Silva thanked the Cuban government and people for the collaboration which he described as humanitarian and supportive.

For his part, Ramon Hernandez Vazquez, Cuban ambassador to Timor Leste, said over the past five years a total of 534 doctors and other health specialists have worked in that country and 45 percent of consultations have been made in the patients' home.

Hernandez said 27,000 operations have been performed by members of the brigade, 23,315 birth deliveries, while 12,616 lives have been saved.

In addition, the Cuban medical staff is training 168 doctors through a new teaching method linked to primary care centers.


Cuba Helps East Timor Literacy

Dili, Apr 9 (Prensa Latina) East Timor President Jose Ramos Horta presided over a ceremony in which the enclave district Oecusse joined in the on going literacy drive with the Cuban program "Yo, si puedo" (Yes, I Can).

In this way the head of state enhanced the drive and Oecusse is expected to become a reference point for other areas so that the country can be declared free from illiteracy as soon as possible.

President Ramos Horta urged support from local officials and institutions, especially encouraging enrollment in classes.

In the ceremony, Ramos Horta reaffirmed his appreciation for Cuban leader Fidel Castro, the Cuban government and people in their willingness to aid in this undertaking.

Education Minister Joao Cancio noted how the president extended the literacy drive nation wide, and also thanked Cuba for the support. He called for the creation of more classrooms to meet the goal, adding that there are 22,000 graduates already.

The ceremony was attended by ministers, cabinet secretaries, officials from national institutions and the ambassadors of Cuba, Malaysia, Indonesia and the EU.

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