Former Nuncio says non-violent transition in Cuba is possible

.- As the world awaits news on the condition of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, Archbishop Giulio Einaudi, who was Apostolic Nuncio in Cuba from 1980-88, said this week, a transition could take place on the island nation without recourse to violence.

Speaking to the Chilean daily “El Mercurio,” the archbishop explained, “A non-violent transition is possible, depending on how this matter is handled.  Personally I think it can take place through normal channels after so many years of revolution.”

“If the international community will approach Cuba through dialogue, the situation can evolve in a very positive way,” he stated.

He also referred to the transfer of power from Fidel Castro to his brother Raul, saying he “should be capable of leading the country towards peaceful and normal progress.”

The interim leader’s “limitation could also be its strength,” Archbishop Einaudi continued, “as he was at Fidel’s side during all these years.  Thus he knows the situation completely. It depends on how he will handle matters in this period of transition, which we don’t know yet if it will be one of transition. It depends greatly on him and precisely on the powers he may choose to employ.”   Nevertheless, the archbishop said it was too early to talk of a post-Fidel period.  “We cannot say that a truly post-Castro era has begun, as it is possible he will improve and return,” he maintained.

Asked about the Cuban bishops’ statement that they would not accept or support any kind of foreign intervention in the country, Archbishop Einaudi said Cardinal Jaime Ortega of Havana “is a very prudent man and is capable of facing this transition.”
“As the Church we do not get involved in political alternatives: We can follow the evolution of events, and also call for prayer, but that’s it.  And this what was done when the Church in Cuba called on the faithful to pray that the Lord would be with Castro in these difficult moments, which are hard for him, but also for the entire Cuban people,” the former-Nuncio said.

Speaking about his time as Apostolic Nuncio in Cuba, he recalled “there was a good relationship with Felipe Carneado—at that time head of the Communist Party’s Central Committee for relations with the Church.  Almost every day we met to analyze the daily affairs of the Church, such as the possibility of having more priests and religious, facilitating the importation of literature, building new parishes, etc.”

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