Cuba Criticizes US Ruling on Internet Access

Cuba says US ruling loosening Internet services to island meant to aid ‘subversion’

Cuba says a U.S. ruling that makes it easier for companies to provide Internet communications services on the island is meant to destabilize the country, not loosen Washington’s 48-year economic embargo. “The government of the United States has said clearly that its objective is to use these services as a tool of subversion and destabilization,” Josefina Vidal Ferreiro, director of the Cuban Foreign Ministry’s North American affairs office, said Monday. Last week, the U.S. Treasury Department announced it would allow the export of Internet communications services and software such as instant messaging, e-mail and Web browsing to Iran, Sudan and Cuba to help people in those countries communicate. Cuba has the lowest level of Internet penetration in the Western Hemisphere. What services exist are prohibitively expensive for most people on the island, and many Web sites are blocked. Opponents say Cuba’s communist government intentionally keeps the Internet out of reach in an effort to control information. Cuba counters that the U.S. economic embargo is to blame for blocking construction of a fiber optic cable, leaving the island dependent on slow, expensive satellite links. Vidal Ferreiro said the new measures announced by the Treasury Department would apply only to individuals, not businesses or institutions, and would do nothing to loosen the grip of the embargo, which Cuban officials refer to as a “blockade.”


One thought on “Cuba Criticizes US Ruling on Internet Access

  1. Pingback: Cuba Criticizes US Ruling on Internet Access « Stevevirgin's Blog | Cuba today

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