Cuba declines American help for damage caused by Hurricane Dennis

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

As Hurricane Dennis rolls through the Caribbean the death toll in Cuba has continued to rise. According to Cuba's communist president, Fidel Castro, the death toll of the hurricane has gone from 10 deaths yesterday to 16 deaths today. He explained the situation with a several hours long speech which commenced Monday evening and continued on until Tuesday morning. In the speech Castro estimates in total $1.4 billion US in property damage. He also stated the hurricane damaged 120,000 homes, 15,000 of which were destroyed and stated that the citrus crops were wrecked by the 240km/h winds of the hurricane.

Castro has rejected a $50,000 offer of aid from the United States. Castro explains that he won't be willing to accept the any aid until the U.S. lifts the trade embargo on his country. Castro claims the embargo is "genocidal" against his people. Some other nations have similar trade embargoes with Cuba; Castro has also said that aid will only be accepted from nations that do not have such arrangements.