Cuban Cardinal Awarded Isabella Order

Cardinal Jaime Ortega. Photo: Raquel Pérez

HAVANA TIMES, Jan 26 — Cuban Cardinal Jaime Ortega Alamino was honored on Tuesday in the island’s capital city with the “Order of the Grand Cross of Isabel the Catholic,” awarded by the Spanish government, reports EFE.

The archbishop of Havana received the award from the Spanish ambassador in Cuba in a ceremony attended by representatives of the Cuban government, the Apostolic Nuncio to the island, local cultural figures and members of the diplomatic corps.

Ortega, the highest Catholic authority on the island, increased his public profile by serving as the mediator with the Cuban government in the release of political prisoners in 2011.

The Orden de Isabel la Catolica is awarded to those who make contributions relevant to either Spain or the promotion of friendly relations and cooperation between that nation and the rest of the international community.