President Jair Bolsonaro (non-party) on Monday criticized (12) the Cuban government’s crackdown on protests in the country on Sunday (11), when thousands took to the streets to express their frustration at months of crisis, restrictions due to Covid and complaints of lack of state support.
“They asked, in addition to food, for electricity. They asked … They asked for one more thing. Finally, in fourth place, they asked for freedom. Do you know what they had yesterday? Rubber, beatings and imprisonment, “the Brazilian president told his supporters at the Palácio da Alvorada. The interaction was recorded and broadcast by a Pocketnarista channel on the Internet.
In a speech broadcast on national television, the country’s leader and first secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba, Miguel Díaz-Canel, accused the United States of being responsible for the acts. “We call on all revolutionaries in the country, all communists, to take to the streets where there are efforts to produce these provocations,” said Díaz-Canel.
This Monday, Joe Biden, President of the United States, responded. “We are on the side of the Cuban people and their clear call for freedom. The United States is asking the Cuban regime, instead of getting rich, to listen to its people and meet their needs,” Biden said in a statement.
Late Sunday afternoon, special forces jeeps equipped with machine guns surrounded Havana. Thousands of people gathered in the city center and along the seaside road, and there were a few episodes of unrest, with arrests and brawls. Videos on social media show hundreds of residents chanting anti-government slogans and demanding coronavirus vaccines and an end to daily blackouts.
The acts came on a day when Cuba recorded a new daily record of infections and deaths from the coronavirus, with 6,923 cases reported out of a total of 238,491, in addition to 47 deaths in 24 hours, totaling, in total , since the start of the health crisis, 1,537 deaths.
The Caribbean island is going through a deep economic crisis, made worse by the coronavirus pandemic and by the tightening of the embargo the United States has maintained on the country for the past 60 years – both impacting tourism, its main source of income. Last year, during the Covid crisis, tourist towns emptied.
Bolsonaro took advantage of the crackdown in Cuba to feed his political discourse on the communist ghost that he says haunts Brazil. Behind former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in the polls of intention to vote, Bolsonaro repeatedly associates the possible return of the PT to power with the installation of communism in Brazil.
“Yesterday was a very sad day considering what happened in Cuba. Many people think that we will never get there, that we will never get to Venezuela, that we will have problems like they have. with other countries here, “he told his supporters. .
“There are people here in Brazil who support those who support Cuba, who support Venezuela. People who have been to Cuba several times to drink champagne [sic] with Fidel Castro or went to Venezuela to drink whiskey with [Nicolás] Mature. And there are people here who support those types of people. It’s a sign that they want to live like Cubans, like Venezuelans, ”Bolsonaro insisted.