MIAMI (CBSMiami) – After rare widespread protests in Cuba, more than 100 people have been arrested or are missing, according to anti-government activists.
The demonstrations on the Communist island, and in cities across the United States, have prompted President Joe Biden to examine the administration’s stance with Cuba.READ MORE: Florida Records Highest One-Day Total Of COVID Cases With 21,000
The economy is ailing, food and medicine are scarce, all while the number of COVID-19 cases skyrockets.
The massive anti-government demonstrations erupted across Cuba at levels never seen before in the country’s 62-year Communist regime. The government quickly reacted with violence.
“We call on the government, the government of Cuba, to refrain from violence or the attempts to silence the voice of the people of Cuba,” said President Biden.
The protests have prompted the Biden administration to take a second look at their policy with Cuba, something that wasn’t previously a priority.READ MORE: Royal Caribbean Expands COVID Testing Requirements
Under the Obama administration, embassies reopened and many U.S. restrictions eased in Cuba. But it didn’t have the intended effect.
“The regime enriched itself. The Cuban people never saw any benefit from that,” said U.S. Senator Bob Menendez from New Jersey.
The Trump administration reinstated travel regulations, along with sanctions, and named Cuba a state-sponsor of terrorism.
Despite campaign promises to go back to full diplomatic relations, the Biden administration has yet to take action.MORE NEWS: Hundreds Attend 'Down With The Chains' Rally At Bayfront Park For Freedom For Cuba, Venezuela & Nicaragua
“The longer it takes for the United States to act, the more costly this situation becomes for the Cuban people,” said Ricardo Herrero, Executive Director of the Cuba Study Group.