On July 11th, thousands went to Cuba’s streets to protest against the government and call for the first-ever civilian President Miguel Diaz-Canel to step down.
The protests erupted amid Cuba’s worst economic crisis since the fall of the Soviet Union and a record surge in coronavirus infections, with people voicing anger over shortages of basic goods, curbs on civil liberties and the authorities’ handling of the pandemic.
Thousands took to the streets in various parts of Havana including the historic centre, their shouts of “Diaz-Canel step down” drowning out groups of government supporters waving the Cuban flag and chanting “Fidel.”
Special forces jeeps, with machine guns mounted on the back were seen throughout the capital and the police presence was heavy even after protesters had returned home following the 21:00 curfew imposed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Diaz-Canel, who also heads the Communist Party, blamed the unrest on old Cold War foe the United States, which in recent years tightened its decades-old trade embargo on the island, in a televised speech.
Diaz-Canel said many protesters were sincere but manipulated by U.S.-orchestrated social media campaigns and “mercenaries” on the ground, and warned that further “provocations” would not be tolerated, calling on supporters to confront “provocations.”
The President is expected to make another address on July 12th at 21:00 local time.
In one area of Havana, protesters took out their anger on an empty police car, rolling it over and then throwing stones at it. Elsewhere, they chanted “repressors” at riot police.
Some protesters said they went on to the streets to join in after seeing what was happening on social media, which has become an increasingly important factor since the introduction of mobile internet two and a half years ago, although connections were patchy.
The protests initially began in San Antonio de los Banos municipality in Artemisa Province, bordering Havana. Video on social media showed hundreds of residents chanting anti-government slogans and demanding everything from coronavirus vaccines to an end of daily blackouts.
President Diaz-Canel visited the town, later saying in his broadcast remarks: “We are calling on all the revolutionaries in the country, all the Communists, to hit the streets wherever there is an effort to produce these provocations”.
Julie Chung, acting undersecretary of the U.S. State Department’s Office of Western Hemisphere Affairs, said it was deeply concerned by “calls to combat” in Cuba and stood by the Cuban people’s right for peaceful assembly.”
“The US supports freedom of expression and assembly across Cuba, and would strongly condemn any violence or targeting of peaceful protesters who are exercising their universal rights,” US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said on Twitter.
Cuba has been experiencing a worsening economic crisis for two years, which the government blames mainly on U.S. sanctions and the pandemic, while its detractors cite incompetence and a Soviet-style one-party system.
A combination of sanctions, inefficiencies and the pandemic has shut down tourism and slowed other foreign revenue flows in a country dependent on them to import the bulk of its food, fuel and inputs for agriculture and manufacturing.
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Too fishy, venezuela with gangs attacking caracas with long arms , Haiti with the assassination of its president (with colombian and americas hands) and now Cuba with this….. pfff sniff sniff CIA
Stupid Cuba allowed the US embassy to reopen there. Now its time to pat the piper.
Give an inch and before you know it, the US takes control of the nation. They need Russian nukes, stored on the Island, to seriously upset the US.
What exactly goes on in US Embassies? Besides preparation of those NED controlled colour revolutions.
Close the US Embassy and throw the Ambassador out and i hope the Cubans havn’t been silly enough to let NGOs into the Country,and dig those Fascists out of their nests.
The dumbass Americunts will fail in Cuba as usual.
NED all over it, with that other NGO that all tax payers fund, aka the Open Society Foundation.
Cuba allows NGO’s to operate there ?
The Cuban president has openly said that the US is destabilizing Cuba and has offered proof. However, the Cuban population strongly supports the socialist revolution and CIA efforts will not succeed and the staged protests have already died down.
Okay, this is all American Satanic Zionistic CIA staged play. We have seen it so many times all over so called “non democratic” World, but it won’t be working, just like it didn’t worked out in Venezuela.
Julie, you Chinese traitor, better watch your own business. For fs what is “us sate department office of western hemisphere bs affairs”? She probably thinks it is Godfather movie.
I bet she doesn’t even know where Cuba is in the map, bet she thinks is a middle east country.
She was born in south korea and moved to california at an early age. The usual background for mind controlled idiots who believe in the “american dream”.
Look at the Taiwanese traitor “president” tsai ing wen, way worse in terms of subversive activity against the people.
Cuba has had many years to work with Russia and China to expand bilateral trade and direct foreign investment. The Russians even wiped out Cuba’s debts under the old system, a clean slate.
A corrupt, dysfunctional regime rarely makes good choices. For example, re=opening the US embassy in Cuba.
Isn’t Biden backing the protesters? If so, why does NED and Open Society Foundation come to mind? How many colour revolutions do they need/demand?
You expect the people to trust a “president” who hides behind a muzzle? Perfect symbol of submission to none other than the bourgeoisie.
Maybe Diaz Canel is afraid of the colombians busting his door.
The protests are therefore legit but of course the CIA is gonna take adventage of this as much as they can.
The Cubans wanting a little freedom and what happen? Immediately Putin and China arrives with hypersonic nukes and billions of Yuan to secure the Gulag regime. But America will not stand back and bow for threats from shithole countries. America will free this world for scumbags!