Cuban authorities mistakenly send Russian remains to Canadian family grieving lost loved one

Moscow said it wasn’t certain if the deceased person is one of its citizens or how they became involved in the sad mix-up of deceased bodies.

The Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs has extended an apology to a Canadian family, after handlers misplaced the remains of their family member, who died last month while on vacation in the Caribbean country.
A funeral in Canada for Faraj Allah Jarjour was supposed to take place last weekend. The 68-year-old passed away on March 22 from a heart attack, while spending vacation with his family near Varadero, a resort town east of Havana.
However, Jarjour’s grieving loved ones then received the body of a stranger, who appeared not just different but was 20 years younger, to Canadian media.
Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez said on X (formerly Twitter) this week that his government is investigating the incident. He added: “I conveyed heartfelt condolences & apologies to relatives and friends of the deceased.”

Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Joly said the Jarjours found themselves in an “unimaginable situation” and that her office was helping them resolve it. Global Affairs Canada said Havana had offered to reimburse the money paid for the repatriation of the Canadian citizen’s body. The service had reportedly cost well over $7,000.

The bereaved family in Canada told the press that the incorrect remains that they received were later identified as those of a Russian man, and that they were then informed that their father’s body had been sent to Russia by mistake.
“We don’t know when my father’s body will arrive,” Jarjour’s daughter Miriam said. “I haven’t had a funeral for my father. We’re not sleeping well.”
The Russian consulate general in Canada said that so far it has not confirmed if the body delivered in error to the family in Canada actually is that of a Russian national.
“As far as we know, the relevant Russian authorities are getting to the bottom of what has happened,” the consulate told media on Friday.