President Biden said Monday he stands with the Cuban people, in response to thousands taking to the streets of Cuba over the weekend in rare anti-government protests denouncing the island’s economic crisis during the pandemic — which has been exacerbated by catastrophic U.S. sanctions. This is White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki.
Press Secretary Jen Psaki: “There’s every indication that yesterday’s protests were spontaneous expressions of people who are exhausted with the Cuban government’s economic mismanagement and repression. And those — these are protests inspired by the harsh reality of everyday life in Cuba, not people in another country.”
Thousands of people also participated in counterprotests in favor of the Cuban Revolution and Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel, who accused the U.S. of instigating the anti-government actions and urged the Biden administration to end the U.S. blockade.
President Miguel Díaz-Canel: “Is it not very hypocritical and cynical that you block me, that you, who carry out policy that violates human rights of an entire people for more than 60 years, intensify it in the midst of a situation as complex as the pandemic, and you want to present yourself as the big savior? Lift the blockade. Lift the 243 measures, and we will see how we get along.”