Categorized | News, Regional

Amid economic reforms, Cuba government goes after corruption

CUBA: (AP)

President Raul Castro is matching his free market economic changes with a zealous battle against entrenched corruption on this Communist-run island, much of it involving Cuban officials at major state-run companies and ministries as well as the foreigners they do business with.

Cuba says the crusade is essential to save the socialist system. Others wonder at the timing of a crackdown that has sent a chill through the small foreign business community, just when the cash-strapped economy needs international financing to push the reforms along.

Cuba has battled corruption before, even executing a former revolutionary war hero on drug trafficking charges in 1989. But past arrests have been largely limited to Cubans. Analysts say the current crackdown seems different, with Canadian, French, Czech, Chilean and English citizens jailed or sentenced for their alleged roles, and scores of small South American and European companies kicked out of the country.

 

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CUBA: (AP)

President Raul Castro is matching his free market economic changes with a zealous battle against entrenched corruption on this Communist-run island, much of it involving Cuban officials at major state-run companies and ministries as well as the foreigners they do business with.

Cuba says the crusade is essential to save the socialist system. Others wonder at the timing of a crackdown that has sent a chill through the small foreign business community, just when the cash-strapped economy needs international financing to push the reforms along.

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Cuba has battled corruption before, even executing a former revolutionary war hero on drug trafficking charges in 1989. But past arrests have been largely limited to Cubans. Analysts say the current crackdown seems different, with Canadian, French, Czech, Chilean and English citizens jailed or sentenced for their alleged roles, and scores of small South American and European companies kicked out of the country.