Cuba's high priests have predicted that this year could turn out to be tumultous with social upheaval and internal conflict.
We can reach all we aspire to, but we can also destroy it all. The possibilities in 2010 are greater than last year's. It all rests in our hands," The Telegraph quoted Lazaro Cuesta, a priest of the Afro-American Santeria religion, as saying.
The country's leading 1,000 babalawos predicted global turmoil, including "coup d'etats," "sudden changes in political systems," "betrayal and usurpation" among top government officials, as well as falling farm and livestock production, and the break-up of agreements, wars and military interventions."
While the soothsayers make no specific references to Cuba's government, the predictions seem to point to the aging Cuban leadership of President Raul Castro, 78, and his ailing brother and Communist Party head Fidel Castro, 83.
The priests urged people to pay heed to the saying, "the young palm trees grow taller and thicker than the old ones," which Babalawo Victor Betancourt interpreted as meaning: "making an overhaul, which is what's needed at the moment and is not taking place."
The babalawos also forecast "serious environmental pollution problems" on a global scale and "rising sea levels."
Other warnings included an increase in cerebral-vascular diseases and in problems of the eyes, lungs and bones.
Santeria was brought to Cuba by African slaves and has many followers among the island's 11 million people.