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Thousands calling for democracy in Cuba march in downtown Miami

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Democracy in Cuba

Thousands of people came together to call for democracy in Cuba and marched from Versailles in Little Havana to the historic Freedom Tower in downtown Miami, amid protests on the island demanding freedom from the dictatorship. 

It’s been over a week since the protests started in Cuba last July 11 across the island. The dictatorship shut down all communications as people were publishing human rights violations from officers. Since then, Cuban’s in Miami have been protesting and organizing events to call for U.S. actions. 

Last Wednesday Cubans gathered at Versailles and Miami police officers escorted the protesters in a five-mile journey, as they walked to get to the building that housed the former U.S Cuban Assistance Center from 1962 to 1974.

“I think that the monumental voice, the platform of social media that they tried to dim down by taking away the internet, I think that’s bringing awareness that we haven’t seen before,” said protester Caridad Rodriguez to WSVN. “We’ve heard these stories, but now we’re seeing what is happening over there.”

democracy in cuba freedom tower

Rosa Iglesias, who left the island when she was 19, said to Local10 news that what Cuba needs is freedom. “What my country needed is the same thing I came here looking for; freedom.”

The rally ended with the illumination of the Freedom Tower in the colors of the Cuban flag; and the FTX Arena, the home area for the Miami Heat located right across the street, displayed a message of solidarity. 

The massive march was the seventh straight day of protests in South Florida, with many calling on President Joe Biden to take action. 

The Board of County Commissioners of Miami-Dade voted on Tuesday 7/20 a resolution urging president Biden and his administration “to condemn the Cuban government’s handling of the protests, and support the Cuban people in their struggle for freedom and basic needs by various avenues, including by maintaining and strengthening economic sanctions, by publicly denouncing the Cuban dictatorship for its violence against the Cuban people, by recognizing the pro-democracy movement’s efforts on behalf of democracy, by using all available technology to allow the free flow of information in and out of Cuba, by diplomatic intervention, and by coordinating an international effort for humanitarian aid and support toward a democratic transition.” 

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