guantanamo city .org - The land between rivers

US Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay

Guantánamo bay is located at the Southeast extreme of Cuba, in Guantánamo Province and has extension about 116 Km2.

It was discovered by Cristobal Colon on April 30th, 1494, during his second trip to the call one New Continent, it is one of the largest in Cuba and its configuration is a double bag. On July 18th, 1741 an English fleet commanded by Admiral Sir Edward Vermon and General Wentworth, from Jamaica Island, arrived at Guantánamo Bay and landed troops with the objective of fortify it and change it into an operation center in order to invade the Cuban eastern part, Vermon started the fortifications on a hill nears the Gtmo, roads, which the inhabitants of the region knew posteriorly as “La loma de los ingleses”. Where Caimanera is raised today, the neighbors found the basis of Cumberland, the city that Vermon invented to found.

The United States Government obtained an everlasting concession that began on February 23rd, 1903, consented by Tomás Estrada Palma, first President of the Republic of Cuba. The newly formed North American protectorate added Indemnity Platt to the Cuban Constitution. The Cuban-North American treaty established, among others things, that the United States would have complete control and jurisdiction over Guantánamo Bay with the intentions of setting naval and shipment stations, while it recognized that the Republic Of Cuba maintained its sovereignty.

The control of this Cuban Territory has never been popular among the Cubans. The Cuban Government has denounced constantly the Article #52 of Vienne Convention in 1969 declares an abolition of a treaty if is concluded that the force or intervention have been used, in this case the adding of the Indemnity Platt in the Cuban Constitution.

In the last quarter of 20th Century, the Base was used as a home for Cuban and Haitian refugees intercepted at high sea. However, starting 21st Century, a small portion of the base was used for lodging some prisoners, suspicions of nexus with Al-Queada and the Taliban army that were caught in Afghanistan.