Florida Governor Ron DeSantis pressures Biden to help keep the internet flowing


Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and other officials pressured the White House on Thursday to support anti-government protesters’ efforts to protect internet service. CubaHe even advocates the use of giant balloons as floating Wi-Fi hotspots to allow images of opposition to flow unabated through the authoritarian nation.

Cuban authorities blocked social media sites to halt the flow of information into the country after thousands of Cubans took to the streets last weekend to protest limited access to COVID-19 vaccines and essential products. The country is experiencing the worst economic crisis in years.

“Obviously we have to stand by our people” Cuba against the communist dictatorship” DeSantis He added that restoring access to the internet is vital to supporting people, he said at a press conference in Miami on Thursday. Cuba.

Protests in the island nation sparked an explosion of support in Florida, home to the country’s largest community of Cuban exiles. Crowds in the Miami, Orlando, and Tampa area rallied in support, sometimes closing main streets.

DeSantis He said every option should be explored, including using offshore and satellite technology to provide internet service. One of the options considered is to use a balloon to provide connection. The Republican governor also suggested using the US Embassy in Havana as a kind of hotspot.

“The thing that communist regimes fear most is the truth. And if we can help Cubans communicate with each other – if we can also communicate with the outside world – that fact will matter. I think this fact will be decisive.” DeSantis I said. “And so, Mister President, it’s time to stand up and be counted.”

We will see how the US government or any other entity, public or private, can keep internet service uninterrupted.

Republican U.S. Rep., whose parents are Cuban exiles. “We need the political will of the Biden administration,” said Maria Elvira Salazar. And if the federal government thinks they can’t pay for the resources, Cuban American society will pay.”

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the administration of President Joe Biden did not immediately evaluate the proposals submitted by Florida officials.

“Well, the lack of internet access as you know… Cuba and it’s very difficult for people Cuba So they can access the right information.” “We’re definitely looking into this to see what can be done to address this issue (issue), but I don’t have an assessment of that in terms of this particular offer.”

Meanwhile, two Florida men were arrested during a protest in support of the demonstrations and are in custody on charges related to the state’s new so-called anti-riot law.

Julian Rodriguez-Rodriguez, 30, and Maikel Vazquez-Pico, 39, were among those arrested Tuesday night when a group of protesters attempted to seize an exit ramp on Interstate 275 and the Dale Mabry Highway, a major Tampa street.

According to the records, both were arrested on charges that included battering a law enforcement officer, resisting law enforcement, and attending an illegal meeting that blocked streets or sidewalks.

According to an arrest report, Rodriguez-Rodriguez held an officer in a bear hug as the officer tried to arrest another protester. The report said that an officer later punched him in the face and broke his glasses as the officer tried to arrest him. He continued to resist arrest until he was handcuffed.

The men were held without bail at Hillsborough County Prison earlier Thursday. It was not immediately clear whether either of them had a lawyer who could comment.

earlier this year, DeSantis It passed a Florida bill that increased penalties for violent demonstrators and created new criminal penalties for organizers of out-of-control demonstrations. The law’s provisions also criminalize blocking some roads and granting immunity to people who pass through protesters blocking a road.

The bill was introduced after racial justice protests last summer when some Black Lives Matter protesters were met with tear gas by police and arrested for days after they took to the streets.

During her Thursday press conference DeSantis once again tried to differentiate the recent protests against him. Cuba from last year.

“Cuban Americans Demonstrating” he is “These are not violent riots. They are at peace outside and have their voices heard, and we support them.”

But he said demonstrators should not block roads that could hinder traffic and trade.

Protesters blocked the Palmetto Highway near Hialeah for about 30 minutes Wednesday night, news sources reported. On Tuesday, they blocked the same highway for hours during rainy rush hour.

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