A former ambassador dies in strange circumstances in Havana

A former ambassador dies in strange circumstances in Havana

HAVANA, February 19. Retired diplomat Felix León Carballo, ambassador to Belarus, Ukraine and the Czech Republic, among other positions, for 40 yearswho spent his time as an official in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, died this Saturday in Havana under suspicious circumstances.

The Foreign Ministry confirmed this Sunday through a statement in which no mention is made of the causes of death, supposedly a homicide according to what has been circulated based on the words of the Cuban ambassador in Djibouti, the first source of the news and which presents himself as a close friend of the deceased.

“Félix León died on me… or rather ‘they died on me’. ‘Pacolo’ as we also know him (I refuse to talk about you in the past tense). So many years together! And some bastards got in the way of our plans. This is our last photo,” Caballero Torres wrote on Facebook, raising the alarm.

The post was deleted hours later, according to independent media, such as Café Fuerte, which was still able to capture some of the comments from those who reacted to the news. “I am very sorry. They took Brother Paco. Not even justice will calm our immense pain. There can be no impunity for that crime,” said Maura Quintero Dipotet, wife of the ambassador in Djibouti.

“Marcelo, how painful Félix’s death is. I still can’t believe it,” wrote another acquaintance on the Djibouti ambassador’s Facebook wall. “That’s life… sometimes it’s lost in the most screwed up… and undeserved way,” he responded.

Several independent media cited Caballero Torres’ message as a source to report the violent death, but hours later the post had disappeared. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs published a statement in which it limited itself to reporting the death and offering its condolences to family and colleagues.

In addition, the Foreign Ministry recalls that León Carballo joined the Foreign Service in 1975 and worked in the Europe Directorate and the Information and Multimedia Services Center. “Let us always remember his contribution to foreign policy and his eternal permanence in the Minrex (sic.) family.”

The Ministry has replicated the text on its social networks, where some acquaintances have gone out of their way to remember the deceased, without anyone else mentioning the possible circumstances of the death. “I will always remember his sincere gratitude, his patience and his determination to make us reflect.

His years of experience made him wise and a bearer of a moral. His revolutionary conviction was always an example and impetus for the entire group. EPD friend Felix,” wrote the Embassy of Granada on Facebook.

“Cuban diplomacy [is] in mourning. We have lost a valuable colleague. Tremendous blow for all of us who knew him. Heartfelt condolences to his closest family and friends,” added diplomat Enrique Almeida.

“I deeply regret the death of our dear colleague and friend Félix León. Excellent diplomat, professional and human being, he will serve as an example to all those who embrace the Foreign Service of our Homeland,” the chain of messages continues.

In X, where it is not possible to delete comments on one’s own publication, the situation has been different. The condolences for the death have been joined by critics of the Government who have demanded solidarity with other deaths allegedly due to the negligence of the regime with those who demand that it be told how the event occurred.

“Tell the truth. He was assaulted and murdered in his house because the PNR cannot stop the crime wave,” demands a user.

At the end of November 2023, the magazine Bohemia published an article titled Social violence in Cuba: Between reality and the Idea in which, based on a non-representative digital survey, it detected that for 92.4% of participants, violence has increased greatly on the Island.

42% stated that they had been aware of 10 or more violent crimes in the last half year and almost half stated that a direct family member or close person was a victim of one of these events.

Furthermore, a third of those affected do not report the crime of which they were victims, but among those who did, 73% did not obtain a solution.