Prostitution in Cuba
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    Cuba’s Colorful Classifieds

    Cuba’s Colorful Classifieds
    May 6, 2013
    Dariela Aquique

    HAVANA TIMES — Opina (“Opinions”) was a magazine published in Cuba in
    the 1980s. Of all the things it printed, the most popular was by far the
    classifieds section. There, people from across the island could
    advertise products or items they wanted to sell, announce that they were
    looking for a new home and offer any type of service (within the bounds
    of what was permitted in the country at the time).

    Thanks to that section in Opina, many Cubans were able to find a new
    house to move to, or sell a cradle, or a king-sized mattress, or a
    furniture set.

    With the onslaught of the Special Period, many things disappeared in
    Cuba. Opina magazine was one of them. The search for homes and the sale
    of personal items entered the black market. Things have changed again,
    however, with the arrival of the Internet and the appearance, some years
    back, of a number of web-sites with classifieds pages.

    Comercioonline, which mostly publishes classified ads for the province
    of Santiago de Cuba, and, containing ads for products and
    services offered in Havana and part of Cuba’s western region, are two of
    the most widely used sites.

    With the new laws that were recently passed in Cuba, and now that the
    sale and purchase of certain types of property, such as vehicles and
    houses, has been legalized, a classifieds page is – understandably – a
    popular place indeed. is, however, more than a space for these kinds of ads. It
    is also a place that offers us a glimpse at one of Cuba’s “hidden faces”.

    There, you can come across ads as suggestive as these:

    50 c.u.c- European couple looking for girl for our upcoming vacation in
    Cuba. We are 23 and 30, respectively. No bad habits.

    10 c.u.c- Sex services for both men and women. I am a voluptuous black

    20 c.u.c- I am a Cuban man currently residing abroad. Looking for male
    masseuse for erotic massage.

    The most explicit ads you find can be as colorful as these:

    We’re a nice, good-looking couple, looking for a pretty, bisexual girl
    interested in doing a menage a trois with us. Don’t be shy and give us a
    call. You’ll have a good time, you won´t regret it. We’ll be in Havana
    as of April 11. Send us a picture. Hugs and kisses.

    Looking for a woman interested in getting married to obtain permanent
    residency abroad. I live in Ecuador and am already a permanent resident
    there. I am 31 years old, so any Cuban woman who wants to travel to
    Ecuador and immediately become a resident there needs to be between the
    ages of 23 and 35. My fee for giving you the opportunity to come to
    Ecuador and get a residency card through me (already a resident) is
    3,000 CUCs. Payments are made via wire transfers. If you’re interested,
    contact me via email as soon as possible. I need the money and you need
    a residence permit. Please do not hesitate to contact me should you have
    any questions. -Cheers

    Of course, I have no problem with freedom of choice, with a market where
    people offer the products or services they want to, and ask for money in
    return. The Cuban State is the one now facing a problem, finding it more
    difficult to conceal the double standards that prevail on the island
    with each day that passes.

    Who can now say we have no prostitution in Cuba, or that people won’t do
    anything in their power to leave the country?

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