MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Pandemonium in Panama City when pro-Castro and anti-Castro groups clashed outside a hotel.
It began when about one hundred supporters of Raul Castro’s government heckled Cuban dissidents and Americans who were in the city for the Summit of the Americas. The altercation quickly escalated with both sides throwing punches.
South Florida lawmakers Mario Diaz-Balart and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen blamed the violence on the pro-Castro supporters.
“Today’s attack by Cuban regime thugs on peaceful pro-democracy protestors and U.S. citizens in Panama is just another reminder of the brutality of the Castro brothers and their enablers. Even in the shadow of the Summit of the Americas, these serial oppressors cannot resist their impulse to beat innocent men and women for practicing their right to freedom of speech,” said Rep. Ros-Lehtinen in a statement.
President Barack Obama and Cuban leader Raul Castro will attend the two day summit which begins Friday.