Cuba says blogger Yoani Sanchez part of "cyberwar"

Reuters News
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Posted: Mar 22, 2011 9:02 AM

HAVANA (Reuters) - Cuba attacked dissident blogger Yoani Sanchez in a nationally televised program on Monday, accusing of her being part of a "cyberwar" against the communist island by the United States and other enemies.

The program, the latest in a series called "Cuba's Reasons," showed Sanchez in grainy videos entering the U.S. Interests Section in Havana and European embassies.

Sanchez, whose "Generation Y" blog is read internationally, was portrayed as part of a massive "media campaign" against Cuba, which the program said has tried to "demonize" socialism.

In return, she has collected a total of $500,000 in international prizes for her work, the program said. Her blog criticizes Cuba's government and the state of the country.

"Cyberwar is not a war of bombs and bullets, but of information, communication, algorithms and bytes. It is the new form of invasion that has originated in the developed world," said the narrator.

Sanchez, who previously has said she was physically attacked by government agents, appeared to take the program in stride.

"I am so happy. Finally the alternative blogosphere on official television, although it's to insult us," she said on Twitter.

The "Cuba's Reasons" series has tried to show that the United States is using new technologies to try to subvert the Cuban government.

It has coincided with the trial and conviction of U.S. aid contractor Alan Gross, who has been jailed since December 2009 for allegedly trying to bring the Internet to government opponents.

He was sentenced to 15 years in prison by a panel of judges in a case that has strained U.S.-Cuba relations.

(Reporting by Jeff Franks; Editing by Eric Beech)