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Varadero to host the World Underwater Photography Championship

Some 60 photographers from almost twenty countries have confirmed their participation in the 19th edition of the World Underwater Photography Championship to be held in Varadero, Matanzas, from 9 to 14 October, the organisers told the press.

Yadira Ramírez Morera, Communications Director of the Cuban Ministry of Tourism, explained that the competitive event includes the 5th World Underwater Video Championship, and is sponsored by the World Confederation of Underwater Activities (CMAS).

He specified that the infrastructure of the resort - facilities, equipment and boats - is ready to receive the competitors, judges and other participants.

It also transpired that the photographers and cameramen come from Finland, Norway, Spain, Portugal, France, Sweden, Italy, Belgium, Slovenia, Germany, Argentina, Brazil and Chile, among others interested in attending the international event.

The CMAS representative in Cuba, Francisco Ferrera, gave details of the competition in which each country participates with two photographers and two cameramen, selected in their respective national championships, most of whom have been distinguished with several awards in these competitions and have numerous followers around the world.

Ferrera reiterated that the conditions are in place for a safe event, both the boats and the locations at depths of up to 30 metres, the divers attending and the diving possibilities in the transparent waters of the north coast of the Hicacos Peninsula.

He stressed his satisfaction that Cuba is for the first time the scene of an event of such magnitude, which reaffirms its classification as a safe destination, with a seaside resort suitable for diving, snorkelling and underwater exploration, thanks to the transparency of its waters, its rich biodiversity and its attractive seabed.

He said that the championship will involve three judges to select the finalists in four categories and another twenty judges who will issue verdicts online to choose the winners.

The director of events and incentives of the Ecotur agency, Francisco Longino Franquiz Domínguez, referred to the three-day programme of competitions, with the inauguration on 9 October, at three in the afternoon, in the lounge of the Meliá Internacional hotel, and the closing day, in the same place and time, on 14 October, with a cultural show.

According to the director of this entity, which acts as a receptive agent for the event, attractive packages are also offered for those interested in holidaying on one of the best beaches in the world during the days of the championship, as well as various optional offers with excursions to Havana, Ciénaga de Zapata, Cienfuegos, Trinidad and Cayo Largo del Sur, designed for those who decide to join the post-tour.

Representing the Cuban team will be Fabián Álvarez, from the province of Camagüey, and Julio Ruiz, from Matanzas, who will attend the competition after being chosen as winners at the national championship, which took place last May at the Punta Perdiz international diving centre in Ciénaga de Zapata.

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