According to Diary of Cubaa pine tree with lights installed in the park on Calle Galiano, between San Miguel and San Rafael, in the heart of Havanahas surprised the Cubans, who have taken it as their first tree of Christmas in over 60 years. However, the Government of the capital has made it clear that it is a “representation of the friendship between Cuba and Italy“.
The 14 meter pine tree was installed and illuminated on Tuesday night and the official Havana Channel reported that it is a gesture that “honours the solidarity of Cuban doctors” sent to that European country during the Covid-19 pandemic.
It is a initiative of the provincial government of Havana and the embassy of Italy in Cubawhich has already sponsored other projects of this type in the Centro Habana municipality.
According to the television report, the pine tree is located on the same street where the lights of the 16 constellations, donated by the Italian Government, were installed in 2019.
It’s all part of “Avenida Italia International Cooperation Project” which “proposes to carry out various socio-cultural activities in the month of December to commemorate the workshop to start the project, bid farewell to a very difficult year for world society and for ours, and celebrate the 65th anniversary of the revolution”, according to a document prepared. by the Italian and Cuban managers quoted by the official website CubaSí.
The “Avenida Italia” event runs from December 10 to 30 and has scheduled business fairs and state companies, concerts by young local artists, children’s activities, demonstrations by martial arts academies and the screening of the final and semifinal matches. of the Soccer World Cup on a giant screen in the street.
During the month of December and in the middle of the electro-energy crisis, The pine planted by the state company Agroforestal will remain illuminated by 333 meters of LED lights with the colors of the Cuban flagwork of an artist from the Cuban Fund of Cultural Assets.
“Although it has been illuminated at this time of year, this is not a Christmas tree. It is, yes, another symbol of what solidarity can achieve,” said the CubaSí note, dampening the enthusiasm generated on social networks.
In a post on Facebook, the announcer, scriptwriter and director of radio programs Jorge Luis Michelena described the pine as “the first public Christmas tree that he sees after 53 years of life.”
In a comment, the pro-government journalist Irma Shelton Tasé wrote: “They should multiply in all the parks in Cuba. Christmas is an international celebration. I don’t see a good idea of having it inside a tourist facility and not having it in our parks or avenues as it happens in other parts of the world. We are a secular state. Religions are respected, why if there are processions to San Lázaro, not put up a public Christmas tree?”
Other users wondered if the blackouts that Cubans have suffered throughout the year would not put an end to the Monday night show.