Cuban Athletes in Brazil Rushed Back Home for Fear of Mass Defection

Cuban athletes leave Pan American Games A rumor that the Cuban athletes participating in the Pan American Games in Brazil were planning a spectacular mass defection, apparently, was the reason behind the sudden and unexpected departure  of the Cuban delegation from Brazil. They returned home leaving behind at least a medal to receive and without taking part in the closing ceremonies.

According to the Brazilian press, Raul Castro, Cuba's acting president, was the one who ordered the immediate return of the athletes to Havana. About 200 athletes and coaches were taken from the Pan-American Village to the International Airport Tom Jobim in Rio in six buses and two trucks.

Asked by reporters why they were leaving a few of the athletes who were talking said that the early departure had been decided even before they left Cuba. At Infraero, the Brazilian air authority, an official informed that the plane they used  had been chartered and initial plans were for the aircraft to leave Sunday night, July 29.

Rodolfo Terez, a Cuban coach, seemed irritated when asked why the whole delegation was leaving Brazil before the end of the games. His answer: "Part of the delegation goes today and the rest tomorrow. Nothing happened and if you ask me this again I will not answer."

The Cubans, on Saturday, won a bronze in the men's tournament, but the Cuban team left the Maracanãzinho way before the medals were given. With the sudden departure there will be no participant of Cuba in the traditional marathon that happens today. Norbert Gutierrez was the athlete supposed to represent that country.

There were four known cases of Cuban defectors during the game. The first case occurred even before the opening ceremonies. Handball player Rafael Capote, 19, abandoned his colleagues July 11, taking a taxi to São Paulo, where he met a fellow Cuban who had defected earlier. Capote, who has since disappeared, said that he was going to ask for political asylum in Brazil.

Artistic gymnastics coach Lázaro Lamelas Ramí­rez was the second one to defect. Then it was the time for boxers Guillermo Rigondeaux and Erislandy Santoya to also abandon their colleagues. Rigondeaux and Santoya. went to Germany, where they have signed a five-year contract with a TV sports channel.

Cuba is the second country with more medals in these Pan-American games, just behind the United States, Cubans got 58 gold medals, 35 silver ones and another 40 of bronze.


  • Show Comments (12)

  • Cuban


  • Cuban

    Leave us alone and dont fuck any more with us , we are here because we want to be here and we dont care about the mess you all have in your own countries , so please , leave mine alone once and for all , we dont sale and rape children , our children dont get shot in their schools , our wimen work and have same right as we men have , our grandpas dont live on the streets and our youngs dont smoke marihuna and carrie guns to kill each others , so , please learn from us , to make this country the best in the world is all about time. VIVA CUBA LIBRE you asholes !!!!!!

  • Another Cuban

    Hey you Cuban,
    who owns an internet service in Cuba, only the members of the seguridad del estado don’t try to get the free world confused, You are one of those that wear the olive green uniforme, How can you ask to be let alone if Castro just a few months after came down from the Sierra Maestra said that they will turn Los Andes in another Sierra Maestra, so who have to leaf alone to who?, and the only freedom that you can find in Cuba is the freedom of a tyrant to do what he wants as he pleases.
    And let me correct you, In Cuba you can find the cheapest paied sex, the eldery population in Cuba is staving with a retirement of 65 pesos, (2.50 dollars) a month. Look, emigration is the thermometer of society, and I just can see peolple leaving that islan on what ever they can find, a rafter, on the landing gear of a plane, stealing a bout… Does not insult our inteligence, you asshole!!!

  • João da Silva

    [quote]socialism = sharing the wealth the majority works to BUILD.

    No,Nobody. Socialism=STEALING the money from the hard working middle class,passing 20% to the poor and 80% being retained by the Comrade Leaders to build dachas (or buy Condos) either in their own countries or in Switzerland,Caymans,etc;

    btw, I didnt know that Cuba has tyrannical regime. I thought Castro dynasty is loved and revered by the citizens of that WorkersÀ‚´s Paradise.Fidel in power for 48 years, he must have done something to mesmerize the Cubans.Long Live the Cuban revolution.

  • bo

    Nobody from the left!!!
    only one word…..


  • Nobody

    stop talking shit about socialism. the reason Cuba has so many problems is because of the tyranical regime and the EMBARGO. one more time. E M B A R G O .

    they have great positives. athletics. medicine. film. music. culture. ecological preserves. .. the list goes on.

    under a good democratic socialist model, with economic support. It would be a great place to be.

    socialism = sharing the wealth the majority works to BUILD.

  • Brazilian Dude

    To joao da silva
    BTW, there was one great thing about the PAN: Seeing Bin Lula get resoundingly booed on national TV!!
    The rest was, obviuosly, a megalomaniac useless waste of money.
    OUR money, more’s the pity!!!

  • Brazilian Dude

    To JoÀƒ£o da Silva
    Yo, bro, chill, will ya? Iwas, like , bein’ sarcastic an’ all, y’know? Only a real shiiiit-for-brains would even consider Cuba to be anything but a FUBAR rathole. That, however, is a description which fits to a “T” those PT types – as well as ou wonderful Osama Bin Lula (hey,he does crash planes into buildings, after all…)

  • João da Silva

    To:Brazilian Dude
    [quote]As many members of the Brazilian govt insist in pointing out, Cuba is a very successful demonstration of the wonders of socialism! If only they could implement that regime here…!!
    That is P.T. ‘s wet dream!

    Dude, I am not going to file my Income Tax next year just to protest.btw, could you please tell me what benefit the PAN games brought to the rest of Brasil? Though the press said that Alencar was going to represent Lula,he wasnt thre either. The games cost almost 8 times the original budget and the money was paid by suckers like us. Then we have to put up with the tirade of Fidel in this site. So I am going to engage in civil disobedience.Cant hear anymore about the glories of the WorkersÀ‚´s paradise. It is all a farce.

  • forrest Brown

    raul that is cubas worst night mare
    now in germany they will have to worrie about raul having them killed and then showing
    them as to how bad it is out side of there perfict world of cuba

    would you pleas tell me what did brasil do to you that makes you so down on them as a people .
    i have found many people here nice , they are stuck here

    the brasilian goverment is the main reason brasil is the way it is so dont blame all brasilians

    for a few peoples bad style ,
    as we could look at the swiss and there treatment of the jews and there no return of monies after ww2 as just as bad as brasilian goverment

  • Brazilian Dude

    Cuba MUST be the worker’s paradise the propaganda loudly proclaims.Those defectors are obviously very disturbed individuals that have crossed the line between tolerating pain, as they have to for their training, to actually enjoying it; for who but a raving, desperate masochist would leave lovely, perfect,wonderful Cuba for horrid, poor, disorganized, undemocratic and unfair Germany?
    As many members of the Brazilian govt insist in pointing out, Cuba is a very successful demonstration of the wonders of socialism! If only they could implement that regime here…!!
    That is P.T. ‘s wet dream!

  • ch.c.

    “Cuba is the second country with more medals in these Pan-American games, just behind the United States”
    Strange……not a word about Brazil ranking !
    So shameful, despite you had the largest delegation of athletes ????????

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