U.S. President Joe Biden, facing twin crises near his country’s borders, declared Cuba a “failed state” on Thursday and said sending U.S. forces to Haiti is not his thing. agenda at this time.
The protesters have been demonstrating in Cuba since Sunday, as rage has grown over commodity shortages, electricity and internet disruptions, reduced civil liberties and government management of an increase in COVID-19 infections . The difficulties are exacerbated by an American trade embargo decades ago that is being reviewed by the Biden administration.
“Unfortunately, Cuba is a failed state and represses its citizens,” Biden said Thursday at a joint news conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in the White House.
Amid calls by Republicans and fellow Biden Democrats to restore Internet services in Cuba, Biden said his administration is studying it.
“They have cut off access to the Internet. We are considering whether we have the technological capacity to restore that access, ”Biden said.
Meanwhile, there have been calls for the US to send troops to Haiti after President Jovenel Moise shot in early July 7 at his home in Port-au-Prince for what Haitian authorities describe as a unit of assassins, including 26 Colombians and two Haitian Americans.
The assassination has caused chaos in the already troubled Caribbean nation, amid an increase in gang violence that has displaced thousands and hampered economic activity in the poorest country in the Americas.
Biden made it clear that the U.S. “only sends U.S. Marines to our embassy” for security reasons.
“The idea of sending U.S. forces to Haiti is not on the agenda at this time.”
They meet Biden-Merkel
Biden welcomed Merkel to the White House on Thursday to discuss disagreements over Russia and China as the two leaders try to strengthen a relationship that former President Donald Trump suffered.
The United States and Germany are key allies of NATO. Biden and Merkel have known and worked with each other for years.
But his two governments disagree on a number of difficult issues, including the Nord Stream 2 a gas pipeline is being built from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea, which Washington fears will harm Ukraine and increase European dependence on Russian gas.
Nor do they agree on the wisdom of collaborating with China on business projects, restrictions on travel to the United States from Europe, and Germany’s opposition to temporary patent exemptions aimed at accelerating vaccine production. COVID-19.
In the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, “They did not resolve their differences, specifically, the United States entered this meeting knowing that this would be a point of friction between the two leaders and it seems that they did not find any common ground.” Said Kimberly Halkett, Al Jazeera White House correspondent.
Merkel told reporters that Germany, Europe’s largest economy, has differing views on the US pipeline. But he said Berlin saw Ukraine as a transit country, which obviously means it believed natural gas should still flow through Ukraine, even if the pipeline is finished.
Merkel said there are a “series of instruments” that Europe can adopt, including sanctions, if Russia does not meet commitments to Ukraine on the pipeline.
Russia says the $ 11 billion pipeline, led by state-owned energy company Gazprom and its Western partners, will be completed by the end of this year.
Biden said “good friends may disagree” on a project like Nord Stream 2 and that both leaders have called on their teams to consider practical measures that countries can take in the pipeline if Ukraine’s energy security is weakened. .
Biden, 78, and Merkel, 66, see eye to eye on a range of broader issues and both want to strengthen the transatlantic relationship he suffered under Trump’s frequent and slender criticism of his close American allies.
Merkel, chancellor since 2005, plans to leave Germany’s government after the September national elections, meaning she is likely to be seen as a “lame duck” in her last months in power.
The survey shows it Christian Democrats they are ready to take the lead in forming a government after the election, but it is still unclear which parties would be included in a coalition.
Biden’s Democratic Party has so many majorities in the U.S. Congress that it could evaporate in the 2022 congressional elections.
A visit to Merkel’s White House, the first by a European leader since Biden took office in January, showed the U.S. was trying to amend with an ally who had been attacked frequently during the Trump years.