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More demonstrations being held in solidarity with antigovernment protests in Cuba

Rally held at Forest Hill Boulevard, Military Trail
Rally to support Cuba held near West Palm Beach on July 14, 2021
Posted at 12:42 PM, Jul 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-14 18:32:31-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.  — Supporters of the demonstrations occurring in Cuba held another rally Wednesday evening near West Palm Beach.

The rally in Palm Beach County was held at the corner of Forest Hill Boulevard and Military Trail.

MORE: Are Cuban American protests on I-95 breaking Florida's "anti-riot" law?

Multiple demonstrations have been held since Sunday in West Palm Beach, including a Tuesday gathering at Jose Marti Park in West Palm Beach.

A larger demonstration occurred Tuesday night where protesters gathered on Interstate 95 southbound, shutting down traffic near the Okeechobee Boulevard exit for about an hour.

Law enforcement said Tuesday night's rally totaled about 200 to 250 people.

Cuba protesters shut down I-95 near the Okeechobee Boulevard exit on July 13, 2021
Protesters shut down Interstate 95 near the Okeechobee Boulevard exit on July 13, 2021, in West Palm Beach.

Similar demonstrations in Miami-Dade County on Tuesday also spilled onto a major expressway in both directions, causing major traffic delays.

The protests that erupted on the island last weekend have seen thousands of Cubans in the streets voicing grievances against shortages of goods, rising prices and power cuts, and some protesters have called for a change of government.

"There's no food or medicine. … The whole country is waiting for that. Cuba is not alone," said resident Luis Alberto Ojeda.

The U.S. Coast Guard has been monitoring any attempt at what it called "unsafe and illegal" boat crossings toward Cuba by those sympathetic to the island protesters.

Lack of Communication

Cuban Americans have said this week they have had difficulty reaching family members, saying the government on the island nation has was responsible for cutting off internet communication.

Supporters fear that antigovernment protesters broadcasted the movement on the internet, prompting the Cuban government to cut off communications.

The organization Cubanos Pa’lante has been raising money to send to Cuba.

However, since the internet has been shut down for more than 48 hours, the groups said it has been challenging to send funds to activists and grassroots organizers on the island.

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and U.S. Rep. Carlos Gimenez, R-Fla., are calling on President Joe Biden to aid the protesters by making free satellite internet access available on the island.

Cuba confirms 1 man dead during protests

The Interior Ministry said Tuesday that the man died Monday during a clash between protesters and police on the outskirts of Havana. It said an unspecified number of people were arrested.

Havana still has a heavy police presence, with officers particularly guarding key points such as the Malecon coastal promenade and the Capitol.