Cuban doctors to remain in Kenya until year-end

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HAVANA, Cuba, (teleSUR) — Kenya’s health minister Mutahi Kagwe Wednesday confirmed that his country has renewed an agreement for a brigade of Cuban doctors to continue collaborating in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We have renewed the agreement for six months, but we are planning to do it for more years. We are waiting for the COVID-19 pandemic cases to be reduced so we can travel to Cuba to have a conversation with the government,” Kagwe said.

In 2018, this African country signed an agreement to improve health care through the participation of Cuban radiologists, surgeons, orthopedists, neurologists, and nephrologists. Although the agreement formally expired in early June, Kenyan national and sub-national authorities wish to maintain Cuban cooperation.

“We are very happy with the relationship we have developed with the Cuban government. The governors are willing to accommodate doctors for more years,” the health minister explained.

The Kenyan government’s decision “will help a lot, especially now that counties are registering high numbers of COVID-19 cases,” the governing council president Wycliffe Oparanya said at a time when his country has reported 3,094 COVID-19 infections and 89 deaths.

Kenya had used almost US$9.3 million to finance the salaries of Cuban professionals, most of whom have been working under difficult conditions in a country facing multiple problems.

On April 12, 2019, for example, doctors Assel Herrera and Landy Rodriguez were kidnapped near the border with Somalia by the jihadist group Al Shabab. They remain captive.

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