VLADIMIR Putin is set to reactivate Soviet-era military intelligence bases in Cuba, almost 60 years after Fidel Castro and his band of revolutionaries seized power from the US-backed Fulgencio Batista on December 31, 1959.
In the darkest days of the Cold War, Cuba was at the centre of tensions between the US and the Soviet Union, with the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis bringing the world closer to all-out nuclear war than ever before. Ever since, Cuba’s relationship with the US has been frosty at best and the legacy of the island’s close diplomatic ties with Moscow remains strong to this day. Now, the island’s bond with the Kremlin is as strong as ever and current Russian supremo Vladimir Putin appears hell-bent on strengthening it further.
Cuban president Miguel Diaz-Canal met with Putin in Moscow in November, saying he wanted to give a “new impulse” to bilateral relations.
The two leaders discussed military cooperation, as well as matters on healthcare and tourism.
Meanwhile, Yuri Borisov, Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister, went on a much-publicised visit to Cuba that same month.
Borisov, who oversees Russia’s military-industrial complex and military-technical relations with foreign countries, agreed on contracts of more than…