“Peoples are only united by ties of fraternity and love”. These are the words of José Martí, the national hero of Cuba, expressed by the Indonesian Ambassador to Cuba, H.E. Mr. Banua Radja Manik in his speech at the opening of the Indonesian Stamps and Cultural Exhibition on January 28th 2010, held at the Casa de Asia. The event was included as part of the activities to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the establishing of diplomatic relations between Indonesia and Cuba and the exhibition will remain open for a week, from January 28th till February 3rd.
Present at the opening ceremony were different important persons from the Parliament, the Government, the mass organizations, the media and the heads of foreign missions in Havana.
The Exhibition was organized as collaboration between the Indonesian Embassy in Havana, the “Museo Casa de Asia” (Museum of the House of Asia) and the Postal Museum of Cuba.
Among the exhibits were several important objects related with the bilateral relations between both countries such as a collection of photographs of the visit of the Indonesian President Soekarno in 1960 which was the first visit of a foreign Head of State to Cuba following the revolution in 1959. In addition a postal stamp issued in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the bilateral relations, that was launched on January 22nd by the Cuban Government was also exhibited.
The exhibition also included a collection of Indonesian stamps of the Cuban Postal Museum among others Indonesian stamps from the Dutch colonial times up till the year 2005. In addition, the Indonesian Embassy in Havana presented several objects of traditional arts and handicrafts such as puppets made of leather, traditional “Wayang” puppets, traditional “Angklung” music instruments, Balinese sculptures, batik and traditional Batak cloths, as well as a range of cultural objects such as a collection of dolls dressed in traditional costumes of 33 Indonesian provinces.
While the guests observed the exhibits, they were offered typical Indonesian snacks. Many of the guests expressed that historically the Cuban people feel close to Indonesia, considered to be a country that has always supported the third world peoples as was proven at the Asia-Africa Conference in Bandung.
The Casa de Asia is located in a strategic center of Old Havana (“Habana Vieja”) and is the most important tourist center for the Cuban people and for international tourists, so that it was hoped for the exhibition at the Museum to be visited by a wide range of persons and that it will allow for an increase on knowledge about Indonesia among the Cuban public. (Source: Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia, Havana)