Cuban media ridicules Epiphany parade
Cuba's state-controlled media criticised an Epiphany parade on Friday, calling it an imported capitalist show to mislead children.
Catholic World News reports that Cuban state television and an official newspaper slammed as "scarecrows," "clowns" and "insulting types" the Spanish diplomats and businessmen who dressed up to represent the Magi to throw sweets to children in downtown Havana on Saturday.
The parade of the Three Kings riding in horse-drawn coaches was organized by the Spanish Embassy's Cultural Centre in Havana. It was approved by the Cuban authorities and had a police motorcycle escort.
While the Feast of the Epiphany is a major feast day in Hispanic Catholic countries, the holiday has not been celebrated since Fidel Castro's 1959 Communist revolution.
After showing footage of children scrambling for the sweets, a commentator on Cuban state TV said, "These scenes that we have seen show the difference between the capitalist and the socialist conceptions of the respect and dignity with which children should be educated."
Spanish diplomats said no offense was intended and that the embassy has held two similar events in recent years.