The head of the Cuban regime, Miguel Díaz-Canel, said in a speech this Monday morning (12) that the protests that took place on the island the day before were carried out by “delinquents” who “manipulate the emotions of the population through social networks “.
At the top of the regime, Díaz-Canel said the real reason for the island’s shortage of food and medicine was the trade blockade imposed by the United States. “If they want to protest the lack of food, they have to protest the blockade, not the Cuban regime,” he said. “People feel that things are lacking, but whoever organizes these vandalism maneuvers is hypocritically and dishonestly pushing people against a government that cares for them.”
The leader also said that the proposal of those he described as counterrevolutionaries is “to change the regime and set up another that does not care for the population, run by businesses and American money “and that, without the current model, Cuba would not develop vaccines against Covid. “We can have vaccines today at low cost because we have developed our own medicine and we spend much less on it than the great powers, which manufacture and sell vaccines at very high prices.”
Díaz-Canel showed pictures of looting in shops and asked, “If there is no food, why steal fridges and televisions, and no food?” He also listed cases of vandalism and attacks on the police.
Rogelio Polanco, head of the ideological department of the Central Committee, stressed that the movement against the regime on the networks is financed by “foreign interests” and called it “very dangerous” because it uses a “new public space, the social networks “. For him, the platforms “give a voice to ill-informed and ill-intentioned people who can wage an unconventional war”.
Then he turned to Díaz-Canel and said there was a way to tackle the problem: invest in digital intelligence, which the government would do. Polanco also said that “the Venezuelan government faces the same problem, allowing the ruler of the island to remember that Nicolás Maduro, the Venezuelan dictator, was one of the first to call in to support the Cuban regime.
Finally, Díaz-Canel declared that he had fought to attract investment from abroad, at a time when “there are so many American campaigns against our country”. “By putting us on the list of terrorist countries, we have lost a lot of investors. We are gradually recovering. Because it is a government that works for the people. If people listen to these YouTubers, they will support a regime change which will bring a system which will not have this concern for the well-being of the population, like us “.
The meeting had questions from reporters aligned with the government. Reporters addressed benign questions, such as how the government handled the coronavirus pandemic and health measures, with no opportunity to refute the answers. None had a critical tone.
Díaz-Canel urged the population to focus on the fight against Covid, to continue to follow the protocols and to wait for the vaccination to take effect. “This is a very critical time, we are at a peak, but it could be a lot worse, these numbers would be a lot worse if we didn’t act. If there’s one thing we don’t need, it is that these agitators are working against. “
On the day of the mass protests, the country’s largest in decades, Cuba recorded a new daily record of Covid infections and deaths, with 6,923 cases out of a total of 238,491, in addition to 47 deaths in 24 hours, adding to all, since the start of the health crisis, 1,537 deaths. These figures, however, according to opponents, do not reflect the real situation of the hospitals, which are said to have collapsed.
So far, 27% of the population has received at least one dose of immunizing agents and 15% are fully vaccinated. In 2019, according to the World Bank, the island had 11.3 million inhabitants.