Cubans live in shadow of US detention center at Guantanamo Bay

World Today

Just a handful of kilometers separate this sleepy Cuban town from one of the world’s most infamous prisons.

CGTN’s Giles Gibson reports on the tensions between Cuban residents and the U.S. government facility.

Until a few years ago, a small number of residents still crossed the heavily fortified border to work at the U.S. base – but a Cuban government ban on new hires after the Revolution has halted the flow.

Many Caimanera residents say the base is depriving the town of its greatest economic asset, a natural harbor

“The position of the bay is enviable and with the current growth of the Chinese and Caribbean markets, as well as the silk route, it would be a big development opportunity for the country, the area and the town,” Roberto Tirado Gonzalez, Caimanera resident said.

When Barack Obama was in the White House, some locals say they hoped talks would begin on what they call the American “occupation.”

But with President Trump’s reversal of Obama’s decision to close the controversial detention center at Guantanamo, there’s now little hope here for dialogue.

Communist Party officials in Caimanera said the bay has always been theirs. But for now, there’s no sign Washington is willing to give up its longstanding foothold in the Caribbean.