From north to south, Havana to Santiago de Cuba, amidst the decaying buildings, propagandizing billboards and food stores with empty shelves there are two things in Cuba which are always in full supply: prostitutes and sex tourists. In a country with few employment options that offer enough upon which to subsist and an embargo that contributes to substandard living conditions for the majority of the population, women and girls flock to densely populated Havana in search of sexual employment in hotels, bars, restaurants and on the streets. Sex tourists flock to Havana and other cities in search of a form of escapism that is cheap, safe and exotic. In Cuba, foreign men can command Cuban women and girls with the same ease used to order cocktails. Cuba's current tourism boom is one not seen since the s, when under former dictator Fulgencio Batista, the island lured tourists with promises of cheap cigars, rum, casinos and prostitutes.
Cuba’s most horrifying episode of child sex tourism resulted in a girl’s death
Poverty Pushes Cuban Women into Sex Tourism
During the past decade Cuba has become a haven for international sex tourists. How do we explain this phenomenon? This article contends that the Cuban experience must be understood as part of a set of larger global processes. It utilizes a commodity chains framework in order to uncover the links between the local sex tourism industry and these larger international processes.
Prostitution in Cuba is not officially illegal, however, there is legislation against pimps, sexual exploitation of minors and pornography. Many Cubans do not consider the practice immoral. Sex trafficking is a problem in the country. The country, and Havana in particular, has often been associated with prostitution in foreign eyes. A public debate followed concerning the relationship between the changes in the city's demographics and the levels of prostitution in the city.
This copy is for your personal non-commercial use only. For the two Cuban girls, 12 and 13 years old, it was just another sex party with foreign tourists — videotaped, fueled by marijuana and alcohol, and involving sex with both men and women. But this time, year-old Lilian Ramirez Espinosa, who suffered from asthma, gasped and blacked out, according to court documents in the case. Her badly decomposed body was found five days later on the isolated outskirts of the eastern city of Bayamo. Canadian, Spanish and other male tourists are flying regularly to the communist-ruled island to have sex with minors, a joint investigation by the Toronto Star and El Nuevo Herald has found.