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Cablegate: Haiti: Review for Suspension of Title Iii Of

VZCZCXRO6294
PP RUEHQU
DE RUEHPU #1921 3411153
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 071153Z DEC 07
FM AMEMBASSY PORT AU PRINCE
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7327
INFO RUEHZH/HAITI COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

UNCLAS PORT AU PRINCE 001921

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

STATE FOR WHA/CCA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ETRD ETTC PREL CU HA
SUBJECT: HAITI: REVIEW FOR SUSPENSION OF TITLE III OF
LIBERTAD ACT

REF: A. SECSTATE 158768
B. PORT AU PRINCE 01743

1. (U) This message is sensitive but unclassified. Please
handle accordingly.

2. (SBU) Summary: The Government of Haiti values its
relationship with Cuba because of the significant amount of
technical assistance it receives from that country. The bulk
of that assistance comes in the form of educational and
professional exchanges and technical assistance. We see no
evidence that Cuba provides appreciable direct financial
inflows into Haiti, whether by investment in the Haitian
economy or through budget commitments. End Summary.

Trade/Investment
----------------

3. (U) Post is aware of no Haitian public or private
investment in Cuba. Post is aware of no bilateral trade
agreements between Haiti and Cuba.

Exchanges: Scholarships for Haitian students
---------------------------------------------

4. (U) As many as eight hundred Haitian medical students have
been provided scholarships to study in Cuba. This program
began under the Jean-Bertrand Aristide's second
administration (2001-2004) and continues today. At the
conclusion of their studies, the Haitian doctors return to
Haiti to practice in public hospitals and clinics.

Exchanges: Health and Energy
-----------------------------

5. (SBU) There are approximately 500 Cuban medical doctors
and technicians practicing in Haitian public hospitals and
clinics. Cuban doctors manage two eye, nose and throat
hospitals in Port-au-Prince and rotate in replacements every
two to three years. The program began during Aristide's
second administration. The physicians departed quickly when
Aristide left the country but returned under the Interim
Government that followed Aristide. Their presence continues
under the Preval administration. (Note: Cuban doctors
appear to be well-regarded in the country. End Note.) Reports
indicate that several hundred Haitians have been provided eye
surgery in Cuba free of charge under the joint
Cuba-Venezuelan program ''Operation Miracle.'' President
Preval frequently travels to Cuba for medical reasons,
although he has begun traveling to the U.S. as well for such
purposes, including dental care. Chamber of Deputies
President Eric Jean-Jacques as of December 5 was in Cuba for
medical treatment.

6. (SBU) In addition to health sector ties, an indeterminate
number of Cubans are in Haiti distributing energy-efficient
light bulbs in poor areas. Technicians also perform
maintenance at generating plants of the national electricity
utility.

Zero GOH Support for Cuban Democracy
------------------------------------

7. (SBU) The Government of Haiti refrains from publicly
criticizing any government that gives it substantial
assistance. We have never witnessed any GOH criticism --
whether by the executive or the legislature -- of Cuba's
human rights and democracy record. This position is not
motivated by ideological affinity to Cuba's social/political
system, but by the friendship Haiti cultivates with any and
all providers of substantial assistance. The Government of
Haiti, for example, never criticizes Taiwan -- which provides
substantial assistance to Haiti -- despite the strategic
significance of China for Haiti. Additionally, thee are
close historical ties between Cubans and Haitians.

No Recent High-Level Visits
---------------------------

8. (U) There have been no high-level diplomatic visits
between Haiti and Cuba in the last six months.
TIGHE

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