Brazil's president snubs Cuba, Venezuela

Jair Bolsonaro rescinds presidents' invitations to his swearing-in ceremony

By Hatzel Vela - Cuba Correspondent

HAVANA, Cuba. - Brazil's president gave a big snub to Cuba as the island deals with a grim economic forecast.

Brazilian President-elect Jair Bolsonaro rescinded two invitations Monday for his swearing-in ceremony -- one to Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and one to Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel. 

In a tweet, Bolsonaro said, "Regimes that violate the freedoms of their peoples and act openly against the future government of Brazil by ideological affinity with the defeated group in the elections, will not be in the presidential possession in 2019. We defend and truly respect democracy."

Brazilian press reported Bolsonaro called Diaz-Canel and Maduro dictators. 

Meanwhile, Diaz-Canel continues to deal with reports of a weak economy. 

In a briefing, members of the National Assembly were told to expect the Cuban economy to grow only 1 to 2 percent between 2019 and 2021.

Diaz-Canel said bettering the economy should be the government's top priority, which he called a fundamental battle. 

In other news, the sole survivor from the plane crash that happened in Havana in May publicly spoke about the ordeal for the first time.

In a Facebook post, Mailen Diaz Almaguer thanked God for giving her a second chance to live and for getting better daily. 

She went on to thank people, especially doctors, nurses and therapists who have helped her recuperate. 

"A big hug to everyone," she wrote.

Diaz Almaguer remains at the hospital undergoing therapy. 

A total of 112 people died in the crash May 18, which happened shortly after the 737-200 took off from Jose Marti International Airport. 

An official cause of the crash is still unknown. 

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