Inside the parallel lives of Guantanamo Bay's residents

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Empty tables and chairs are seen inside a children's play area in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
Local residents wait in line to buy bread in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A table is seen at a restaurant used by U.S. military personnel at the Guantanamo Bay U.S. Naval Base, Cuba, June 3, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A sugar cane field is seen near the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A buoy is seen near the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 2, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A fence is seen at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 2, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A cardboard grenade hangs inside a military vehicle at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 3, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
Clocks showing time in different capitals of the world hang at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 3, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A house door is seen in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
Public telephones are seen outside a shopping mall at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 2, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
Electricity wires are seen over a busy street in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
Globes and books are seen inside a local school in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
An entrance to a bunker is seen at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 2, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
An unidentified member of the U.S. Army walks by an empty prison camp at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 4, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A road is seen near a prison at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 3, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A boy walks along train rails in the outskirts of the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
An unidentified member of the U.S. Army stands by an empty cell inside a prison at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 3, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
An unidentified member of the U.S. Army stands by an empty cell inside a prison at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 3, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A girl stands by a fast food restaurant in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
Local residents play dominoes outside their homes in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
Food is displayed on shelves at a market in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
Local residents ride on a bus in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
Books are seen inside a sample cell displayed within Joint Task Force Guantanamo's Camp VI at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 3, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
An unidentified detainee walks along a cellblock of a prison at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 3, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
An exit door where released detainees are turned over to the countries that have agreed to accept them is seen at the Guantanamo Bay U.S. Naval Base, Cuba, June 3, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
Magazines are seen at a coffee shop at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 2, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A woman rides a train in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A man sits outside a house waiting to join a parade during a local holiday in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A boy runs with a ball during a soccer game in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
Soccer balls are seen inside a cellblock at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 3, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A house window is seen in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 7, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
Clocks showing time in different capitals of the world hang at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, June 3, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
A girl takes a break during a soccer game under heavy rain in the city of Guantanamo, Cuba, December 6, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria 
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GUANTANAMO BAY U.S. NAVAL BASE, Cuba, Feb 2 (Reuters) - On the eastern edge of Cuba, lies the tale of two cities, Guantanamo the city and Guantanamo the U.S. naval base. Both are a testament to the gulf between the two countries and their cultures.

On the base, the uniforms are camouflage. In the city, they are for school or sports. Magazines and books fill the spare time of those at the base, while in the city, cafes, parades and dominoes play that role.

The base is more than a century old, but the Cuban government that came to power with the 1959 revolution has considered it illegal under international law. The U.S. decision in 2002 to send foreign terrorism suspects to a newly constructed detention camp on the base heightened tensions.

Now U.S. President Donald Trump has ordered this week that the center remain open after his predecessor, Barack Obama, unsuccessfully attempted to close the widely condemned prison. Its inmate population stands at 41.

Just 18 miles (29 km) apart, the base on the bay with 5,500 personnel and the inland city of 217,000 people do not mix. Their radio stations chronicle their separate and distinct lives.

Radio Reloj, a Cuban government-run station, promotes the culture of Cuba under the island's communist leadership. It extols the virtues of a 20-year-old swimmer who qualifies for the World Aquatics Championships in Budapest as well as the booming potato exports to Latin America. The sound of a ticking clock - a "reloj" in Spanish - hums beneath the announcements.

At the U.S. naval base, however, Radio Gitmo caters to an expat community, offering tips on the optimal amount of alcohol to consume after dinner and warning of the negative effects of feeding the bay's iguana population.

The two Guantanamos capture the stark contrasts of the neighboring populations with hardly any communication between them. Still, small strands of similarity could be found. At the base, a U.S. soldier patrols the area, while a portrait of Cuban revolutionary hero Che Guevara adorns a wall in the city.

An austere, windowless cell for detainees contrasts with locals playing dominoes outside their homes at dusk. A lone prisoner walks along a dark cellblock, while a group of passengers ride the local bus.

Guantanamo is a stark mix of military order or spontaneous joy, bunkers or bright blue doors, Caribbean sea or sugar cane fields.

 (Reporting by Carlos Barria; Writing by Katanga Johnson; Editing by Mary Milliken and Diane Craft)

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