President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan gifted President Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez of Cuba the letter sent to Ottoman Sultan Abdulhamid II in 1902 by President Tomás Estrada Palma of Cuba.
President Erdoğan also presented President Bermúdez of Cuba with the Ottoman Empire's formal response to Cuba at that time.
In the historic letter, the then-President Palma of Cuba informs Abdulhamid II of "the founding of the Republic of Cuba and his desire to maintain good relations with the Ottoman Empire."
President Bermúdez of Cuba thanked President Erdoğan for his thoughtful gift. President Bermúdez of Cuba said he had never seen this letter before, adding, "This is an absolutely historic document."
“I express Cuba’s intention to maintain friendly and sincere relations with the Ottoman Empire”
The following statements are included in the letter of Cuba's then-president, Tomás Estrada Palma, to the Ottoman Sultan Abdulhamid II:
"It is my honour to notify your Excellency that the land occupied by the United States of America has been freed and the Republic of Cuba was founded at noon on May 20, 1902, and that I have assumed the executive powers granted to me by the constitution of Cuba. I hereby inform you, the supreme Sultan, about this situation, which is an exciting event for this country. Furthermore, on behalf of the Cuban people, I express the Republic of Cuba's unwavering intention to maintain friendly and sincere relations with all communities, especially the Ottoman Empire. May Allah give you, the supreme Sultan, a longer lifetime, happiness, glory, and power, as well as peace and order for your state."
In addition, the following is included in the Ottoman Empire's formal response at the time to Cuba:
"Your Excellency, our noble, highly esteemed, loving, and glorious friend. Your letter of friendship, which declares that the Government of Cuba has been established and that you have assumed the executive authority, as well as your desire to construct and build a friendship, has been received and considered. Your goodwill, which will deepen the friendly relations between the Ottoman Empire and Cuba, is much appreciated. This letter of friendship has been hereby composed and sent with the hopes that your Excellency would always experience success."