14ymedio, Havana, June 25, 2020 — With military training and family members in political positions, Daniel Romero, the anesthesiologist who supposedly fled last Saturday from the Cuban brigade in Andorra, was a key element in the delegation of 39 health workers sent to this tiny European country to fight COVID-19. According to the local press, a nurse joined him in his petition for asylum in the neighboring country of Spain, where both have family.
A rapid review of press reports, in Cuba as well as in Andorra, since the arrival of the brigade in Europe at the end of March, reveals Romero’s leading role. The anesthesiologist appears in high-level meetings with the Andorran Minister of Health, Joan Martínez Benazet, and the Consul General of Cuba in Barcelona, Alain González, who coordinated an intense propaganda campaign about “solidarity” and “philanthropy” as motives for sending medical brigades to 59 countries on the planet.
Barely ten days ago, Cubadebate published a video from Prensa Latina in which an Andorran doctor, Raúl Cerro, thanked the Cuban brigade for its collaboration in the Nostrada Senyora de Meritxell Hospital, specifically acknowledging Dariel Romero and the nurse, Yaquelin Oliva, with whom he worked in surgery.
The identity of the nurse who left with him is unknown; the only leak is that she was one of the youngest people on the brigade.
Apparently, the doctor left behind in his room the Andorran telephone that had been assigned to him plus work documents and a collection of data that the Government had entrusted to him, states Altaveu.
According to what 14ymedio has been able to verify, Alain González, the Cuban Consul, traveled on Thursday from Barcelona to Andorra. Although he is, on a political level, the one who mainly monitors the brigade, and his trips to the Principality have been frequent, it’s presumed that he now is meant to supervise and deal with the situation.
It’s said that González made the health workers uncomfortable, and that those responsible for the brigade were more flexible. González, on his trips to Andorra, imposed restrictions on them. They weren’t supposed to have contact with the population or with Cubans living in the country.
The group of 39 health workers arrived from the Island on March 29 to give support to the Andorran Health Service by caring for those who were ill from coronavirus. The Cubans had worked as specialists in internal medicine in the intensive care unit of El Cedre, a convalescent center for the elderly and disabled.
On May 15, three members of the delegation returned to Cuba, and some days later, another 13 came back. The 23 who remained still had to complete the work mandated by the Government of Andorra until the end of June, after which, in spite of the decrease in patients hospitalized, their stay would be extended for some weeks. The Health Minister, Joan Martínez Benazet, justified the decision alleging that the Cubans were meant to cover different services to allow the local professionals to rest.
Translated by Regina Anavy
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