Dr. Naledi Pandor, Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, expressed her gratitude to the medical team from Cuba who arrived at the Waterkloof Air Force Base in Pretoria in the early hours of the morning.
“I would like to express our deepest gratitude and sincere appreciation for Cuba’s solidarity and the prompt response to our request to send a multidisciplinary team of experts and health professionals to work with the South African health professionals in our response to Covid-19 .
“Cuba is once again proving the character of its country through international human solidarity during the global Covid-19 pandemic, having already deployed Cuban medical brigades in 21 countries,” Pandor said.
“We acknowledge and thank each of the Cuban health professionals who are part of this team for their personal sacrifice to help South Africa combat the spread of the coronavirus disease in our country.
“When we think about the relationship between South Africa and Cuba, it is clear that Cuba’s support for our struggle did not end with the advent of our democracy. South Africa and Cuba have transformed their bond of historical friendship into formal bilateral relations with collaborations that include health, defense, human settlements, water and sanitation and basic education. So our relationship serves as a successful and exemplary model of collaboration, ”Pandor said.
Pandor also said the South African government is still committed to deepening strategic and historical relations and to addressing the general challenges posed by global geopolitical and socio-economic challenges.
#COVID19 | Cuban Health Specialists arrive in South Africa to support efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19. The arrival of the 217 Cuban Health Specialists follows a request made by His Excellency President @CyrilRamaphosa to HE President Díaz Canel Bermúdez of Cuba. #CubaInSA pic.twitter.com/BVwQyiA0C5— Presidency | South Africa ?? (@PresidencyZA) April 26, 2020
“Furthermore, we remain determined in our joint efforts to strengthen our bilateral and multilateral relations to advance the development agenda of the south.
Finally, I would like to thank the Departments of Defense, Health, Cooperative Government and Traditional Affairs and the South African Airways for all the hard work of bringing our Cuban comrades to South Africa. We are also indebted to the Embassy of Cuba for the excellent cooperation our departments enjoy. ”