Many Arizonans stand in solidarity with Cuba during food, power crisis

Protests are erupting all over the country in support of Cuba, standing in solidarity with Cubans who are facing food shortages and high prices.

Arizona is no exception to where protests are happening.

On Tuesday night, many were at the state capitol in downtown Phoenix holding up signs, some reading, "S.O.S. Cuba" and"Free Cuba."

Julie Chung, the acting assistant secretary for the Department of State's Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs, on Sunday suggested that the protests were driven by Cuban people exercising "their right to peaceful assembly to express concern about rising COVID case/deaths & medicine shortage. We commend the numerous efforts of the Cuban people mobilizing donations to help neighbors."

"I want to see freedom, but I want to see the freedom where the government recognizes that people are revolting against dictatorship and lack of basic human rights," said protester Isaac Rivery.

He added, "We are here showing support for our brothers and sisters back in Cuba. We are showing the Cubans there and the United States and the American people that we feel for them. We can't be there physically and but we are here doing the best we can. We are calling for all the communities to see us and notice us."

Ronal Delgado moved to the US eight years ago. During Tuesday's protest, he took a stance and ripped up his passport, saying he's not going back to Cuba until it's free.

He has a request for the US government and President Joe Biden to help Cuba with military integrations because he says the people in Cuba are on the street with nothing and are being killed.

President Joe Biden on Monday called protests in Cuba "remarkable" and a "clarion call for freedom," praising thousands of Cubans who took the streets to protest food shortages and high prices amid the coronavirus crisis — one of the island's biggest antigovernment demonstrations in recent memory.

"The Cuban people are demanding their freedom from an authoritarian regime. I don’t think we’ve seen anything like this protest in a long long time, if, quite frankly, ever," Biden said in a brief exchange with reporters at the start of a meeting with mayors and law enforcement officials to discuss gun violence in the U.S.

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