Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Why now?

There has not been much Cuban Internet news lately, but on November 2, Granma published a statement by the Cuban Ministry of Foreign Affairs targeting the U. S. Interests Section's Internet activity. (Spanish, English)

The statement accuses the Interests Section of doing illegal training and establishing illegal internet connections and networks.

State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told reporters in Washington that "We are absolutely guilty of those charges. The U.S. Interests Section in Havana does regularly offer free courses in using the Internet to Cubans who want to sign up. We also have computers available for Cubans to use. Obviously this wouldn't be necessary if the Cuban government didn't restrict access to the Internet and prevent its own citizens from getting technology training."

This activity has been going on for some time -- my question is "why publish this statement now?" Does it signal a coming crackdown on the Interests Section? Is it an attempt to influence the U. S. election somehow?

Let us know if you have any knowledge of the Interests Section classes and Internet access. Are the classes political as Cuba claims? Do they only offer access to anti-government activists?