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Cuban youth take refuge in Abakua religion

Cuban youth take refuge in Abakua religion

On their knees, blindfolded, five young men listen to blessings in Yoruba, a language brought by African slaves more than four centuries ago, to become the new members of the Abakua society, a unique Cuban cult.

Economic hardship and the covid-19 pandemic pushed many young Cubans to seek refuge in religion, including this cult that was born as a brotherhood of protection among Carabali slaves working as dockworkers in the port of Havana almost 200 years ago.