Havana begins its deconfinement, but without foreign tourists

Havana (AFP) - Finally, Lazaro was able to go fishing, Dayli swim and Fernando run along the Malecon, the famous coastal boulevard of Havana: the Cuban capital began its deconfinement on Friday, allowing its inhabitants to enjoy the sea, but foreign tourists will have to wait.

"We are happy because that's what we all love: fishing", told AFP Lazaro Castillo, 55, who came to try his luck with his fishing rod.

Coming with five friends who share the same hobby, this professional driver arrived at dawn on the Malecon - the meeting place for all Havanese - with his equipment, not to mention his mask on his face, which remains compulsory., as well as a chlorine-based solution to disinfect hands.

"We're all here, happy, but respecting the rules that have been set," he explains.

After three months of confinement where the beaches were closed and fishing prohibited, Lazaro felt nostalgic for the sea.

He sometimes came there "with my dog, we stopped there and we looked at the sea, it is a habit of old people", he laughs.

Havana, city of two million inhabitants, is the last in the country to begin its deconfinement, being considered the epicenter of the coronavirus epidemic.

- "My first day of freedom!" -

If the pandemic was declared under control by the communist authorities, with a total Friday of 2,361 cases including 86 deaths, caution remains in order.

The island of 11.2 million inhabitants keeps its borders closed at least until August 1, only the cayos, a string of paradisiacal islands along its territory, being since Wednesday open to foreign tourists.

"Happy July 3, because all of Cuba is entering the post-Covid 19 stage.May happiness not make us forget the responsibility," President Miguel Diaz-Canel tweeted on Friday.

Posted Date: 2020-07-22

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