Half a million
workers celebrate May Day in Havana, united and
resolved to defend and improve socialism in Cuba
Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba, President
of the Councils of State and Ministers, Army General
Raúl Castro Ruz, presided during Cuba's national May
Day march celebrating International Workers' Day,
culminating in Havana's José Martí Plaza de la
There are many superlatives which
could be used to describe the massive march with
which hundreds of thousands of workers and residents
of the capital celebrated May Day, but perhaps what
was most impressive was the level of organization
among so many men, women and children which allowed
the participants to parade through the Plaza in
record time, one hour, ten minutes.
Thousands of flags, banners, posters
and all manner of creative displays reflecting
popular ingenuity filled the Plaza esplanade,
carried by more than 500,000 Cuban men and women,
organized into 23 blocks, who, led by health care
workers, marched to display their enthusiasm and
combativity, reaffirming their commitment to
preserve and improve socialism.
The march began at 7:30 am with a
speech by Salvador Valdés Mesa, member of the
Party's Political Bureau and Secretary General of
the Cuban Workers Federation (CTC).
Leaders of the Party, government,
the Union of Young Communists, student organizations,
the Revolutionary Armed Forces, the Ministry of the
Interior, along with participants in the Moncada
assault and the Granma expedition, families of the
Cuban Five and other special guests shared the
Tribunal witnessing the Cuban workers' celebration
with more than 1,900 representatives from trade
unions, social justice organizations and solidarity
groups from 117 countries.
At 8:50 am, to the sound of the
Internationale, the march's final block representing
Cuba's youth, concluded the massive celebration.