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Economic crisis and Food shortages in Cuba, thousands protest in the town of San Antonio de los Baños

US sanctions and coronavirus crisis lead to food shortages and high prices, sparking one of the biggest such demonstrations in memory.

cuba protest

U.S. sanctions and the coronavirus problem lead to food shortages and high prices, creating one of the biggest shows in memory.
A massive mass protest of the past three decades has passed in Cuba, as thousands took to the streets of cities across the island, demonstrating food insecurity, high prices and communist law.

Protests began in the morning, in the town of San Antonio de los Baños on the west side of the island, and in the town of Palma Soriano on the east. In both cases, there were hundreds of protesters in the area.

With millions of Cubans now having portable internet on their mobile phones, news of the protests has quickly spread to Havana. In the afternoon, thousands of protesters marched through the center of Havana, proclaiming "their homeland and health" and "freedom".
"I am here because of hunger, because there is no medicine, because of power outages - because there is a shortage of everything," said a 40-year-old man who did not want to be named for fear of reprisals.

"I want a complete change: a change in government, a multi-party election, and an end to communism."
Protesters were met by police wearing a uniform and not dressed, hundreds of protesters - most of their violent - put them in police cars. The youths tore up the plates and threw them at the police; Police spent the pepper and beat protesters with sticks.

Another policeman, who was hit in the head with a cobblestone, was chased away by a car that nearly hit the protester.

With a stone in his hand, 17-year-old Yusniel Pérez stated: “We are here because we are hungry and we are poor. We have no food. We have nothing. ”

At 3pm local time all television stations were interrupted by a broadcast from President Miguel Díaz-Canel who said "the conquest of our country" would meet the "answer to change".

"We call on all revolutionaries in the country, all communists, to take to the streets."

This was followed by a cat-and-mouse game, in which young anti-government protesters tried to occupy parts of the capital's buildings, but were stopped by senior government officials, national security and the military.

Aylin Guerrero, 52, was one of thousands who came out to support the government, in central Havana. "We are a people and we have come out to support our victory," he said, surrounded by thousands of government supporters, some holding wooden clubs. "Even if we are not communists, we are patriotic."

Proponents of her case have been working to make the actual transcript of this statement available online. Proponents of her case have been working to make the actual transcript of this statement available online.

By evening, state troops and supporters had returned to the streets.
The protests focused on the poorest Havana municipalities. The basic complaint of the interviewees was chronic hunger and deprivation.

Cubans live in a crisis that the country has known for 30 years. Trump administration imposed more than 200 new sanctions on the island, aimed at destroying the island's economy and stirring up dissatisfaction, steps that have so far been left unchecked by Biden's administration.

Since the epidemic, which has cost money for tourism, Cubans have been waiting in line for hours to buy basic supplies such as chicken and cleaning supplies. Pharmacy shelves are sterile.
The protests have been the largest since 1994, when tens of thousands showed up at the Havana’s Malecón promenade amid a severe economic crisis caused by the collapse of the Soviet Union.

An official in the Biden administration has sent support for Sunday's protests. Julie Chung, acting deputy secretary of political affairs for the Western Hemisphere, wrote on Twitter: “Peaceful protests are on the rise in Cuba as Cubans use their right to peaceful assembly to voice concerns over rising Covid cases / deaths and drug shortages. We commend the many efforts of Cubans to raise donations to help needy neighbors. ”


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