Washington [US], July 12 (ANI): Raising concern over the ongoing situation in Cuba, US President Joe Biden on Monday called on the "Cuban regime" to hear their people demanding an end to "repression" and poverty.
"We stand with the Cuban people and their clarion call for freedom and relief from the tragic grip of the pandemic and from the decades of repression and economic suffering to which they have been subjected by Cuba's authoritarian regime," the White House said in the statement quoting Biden.
The Cuban people are bravely asserting fundamental and universal rights. Those rights, including the right of peaceful protest and the right to freely determine their own future, must be respected, said Biden, adding that the United States wants the Cuban regime to hear their people and serve their needs at this vital moment rather than enriching themselves.
This comes after Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel accused the United States, saying some of those who participate in massive protests that have engulfed Cuba are paid by the US to provoke unrest in the island.
A day prior, the Cuban President called for his supporters to take to the streets after accusing the US and enemies of the Cuban Revolution of trying to destabilise the Caribbean nation following large-scale protests, reported Sputnik.
"There is a group of people ... hired by the US government, paid indirectly through US government agencies to organise this kind of demonstrations," said Diaz-Canel.
Earlier, on Sunday, thousands of Cubans took to the streets in various parts of the country against lack of freedom and worsening economic conditions.
Protests took place in eight cities including the capital of Havana. Counter-marches of government and communist supporters took place in five cities following the call from the president to fight back. The president himself personally joined the marches in the San Antonio de Los Banos municipality of Havana, reported Sputnik.
It further reported that in one of the cities, protesters and counter-demonstrators clashed and began to throw stones at one another. Protesters have also reportedly looted a store and turned over several cars. There were no reports of further incidents or people sustaining injuries. (ANI)