Havana at 500: a city through the eyes of four ‘habaneros’

Half a millennium since its founding by Spanish colonists, the Cuban capital Havana has become a byword for Latin American romance and revolutionary nostalgia.

As the city celebrate its 500th anniversary, AFP interviewed four Havana residents, whose lives reflect its history and its recent changes.

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Rosalia’s secret to success: hard work and sacrifice

On the red carpet, Spanish star Rosalia reflects on her years of sacrifice before winning big at the Latin Grammys in Las Vegas. (Nov. 15)

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Spanish royals visit Havana for 500th anniversary celebrations | AFP

Spain’s King Felipe VI begins an unprecedented visit to Cuba to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the capital Havana at a time of increased tensions between the island nation and the United States. IMAGES

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Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez casts his vote | AFP

A former basketball player once dubbed “Mr Handsome” for his boyish good looks, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez is a political survivor whose rollercoaster career has played out to the backdrop of chronic instability. He casts his vote as polls open. IMAGES

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On This Day: 8 November 2012

Spanish star Javier Bardem received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. (Nov. 8)

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Catalonia: Pro-independence protest in front of Spanish government delegation in Barcelona | AFP

Dozens of pro-independence protesters gather in front of the Spanish government delegation in Barcelona as Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and the opposition leader visit Barcelona to meet police struggling with Catalan separatist violence. Nearly 600 people have been injured in clashes with police in protests every day since they erupted in the region after Spain’s Supreme Court on Monday sentenced nine Catalan separatist leaders to up to 13 years in jail for sedition over a failed 2017 independence bid.

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Spanish falcons feed Arab passion for raptor hunting | AFP

For centuries, the art of falconry has been a prestigious tradition within Arab society. Today most of these formidable predators come from Spain, which has become the world’s top exporter.

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Spanish olive industry concerned over impending US tariffs | AFP

The US plans to impose a 25 percent tax on some EU agricultural and industrial products, including Spanish olives and olive oil. This puts a strain on businesses like Dcoop, a co-operative headquartered in Antequera, which exports nearly 15 percent of its output to the US, around 35,000 tonnes a year.

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Placido Domingo absent for Mexico music prize amid scandal | AFP

Placido Domingo is honoured with Mexico’s Batuta prize but the Spanish tenor is absent from the ceremony amid a raft of sexual harassment accusations.

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Spanish PM expresses ‘solidarity’ with flood victims | AFP

The Spanish Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez, says that “all material and human resources” are being used to help in the areas of Spain affected by deadly floods. Six people have died as a result of the flood and rescuers have evacuated thousands of people from their homes with the help of some 1,300 troops.

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Actor Banderas says heart attack informed award-winning performance

Antonio Banderas says emotional state after suffering a heart attack provided motivation for his Cannes-award winning performance in the Spanish drama ‘Pain and Glory.’ (Sept. 11)

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