EspañolEcuador President Rafael Correa paid tribute Thursday, March 4 to freedom fighter Jose Marti and former President Fidel Castro in Cuba.
The ceremony took place in the Santa Ifigenia cemetery in Santiago de Cuba. It was the the Ecuadorian leader’s first stop during his official visit to the island.
“This is my last visit as President of Ecuador to Cuba, our sister republic and comrade,” Correa said during the ceremony of the change of guard in the mausoleum where there remains of Marti and Castro lay.
During the ceremony, Correa laid a white rose on the grave of the freedom fighter, and a floral offering decorated with an Ecuadorian flag on the rock of Castro’s ashes.
“I can only thank the Cubans for their support, inspiration and example,” Correa said. “Thank you for this opportunity to visit historical landmarks.”
The Ecuadorian head of state arrived on the night of Wednesday, May 3 and paid tribute — one of the last acts to be carried out before transferring power to his former Vice President Lenin Moreno on May 24.
Correa plans to visit several historical sites in Cuba, such as the Moncada Barracks, which is considered the cradle of the Cuban revolution. He will be granted the status of Illustrious Son of the city, the second most important award on the island.
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The President will also pay another tribute, but this time to the student leader during the dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista, Jose Antonio Echeverria, at the Technical University that now bears his name. Correa will receive the title of Honoris Causa from the University Of Havana.
In addition, Correa will meet with his Cuban counterpart Raul Castro, who will award him with the Jose Marti Order, the highest distinction granted by the Cuban Government to foreigners.