/ Yamil LAGEUS
Senator Jeff Flake, left, and Google board member Eric
Schmidt visited Cuba
Schmidt, a board member of Google's parent company Alphabet,
met Monday with Cuba's new president to discuss improving
Cuban internet connectivity, one of the world's lowest.
benefits of the internet to the world are extraordinary. And
it's important that Cubans have access to the internet at the
same level or even better than everyone else," said Schmidt,
who stepped down from his post as executive chairman early
met with Cuban leader Miguel Diaz-Canel about seeking a dialogue
even though US-Cuban relations have worsened under American
President Donald Trump.
US Senator Jeff Flake -- a supporter of ending the US trade
embargo on Cuba, the Americas' only one-party Communist state --
Schmidt said internet connectivity is key to Cuba's future.
important for the development of the country," he stressed.
and Schmidt discussed US-Cuban relations and possible areas of
cooperation, Cuban officials said.
was the first US delegation to meet with the new Cuban
president, who was sworn in April 19.
over four million Cubans, under half the population, have
limited internet access through public screens and wi-fi areas.
state telephone company says it is in testing on adding data
service to smartphones.
between Havana and Washington have cooled considerably since
Trump took office in January 2017.
Trump administration has tightened restrictions on US travelers
the State Department said it will permanently scale back its
mission in Havana, which had already been operating with reduced
staff since September 2017, when diplomats and relatives were
evacuated over a health incident.