Cuba rejects new US policy, saying pressure will not work

20 June 2017, 12:13 | Noah Barnes

Russia urges President Trump to discard 'Cold War' policy on Cuba

Cuba's Formal Response to Trump's Speech on Policy Changes

The measures announced impose additional obstacles to the already very limited opportunities that the United States business sector had in order to trade with and invest in Cuba.

Still, Rodriguez said, the Cuban government had no intention of meeting Trump's demands, including extraditing USA fugitives from justice, like convicted cop killer Assata Shakur.

While Trump said the new measures are created to help Cuba's small but growing private business sector, they could have the impact of scaring off American visitors confused by the growing complexity of travel to the island. We will review the extent of the tightening of the travel rules, but our guests have already been travelling under the 12 approved forms of travel to Cuba since we undertook our historic first cruise to Cuba more than a year ago.

Polls showed that most Americans - even many Miami exiles - agreed that the US embargo on Cuba was outdated. The president claimed that he would seek a "better deal" and refuse to lift the embargo on Cuba until: (1) the Castro regime was no longer in power, (2) free and fair elections had occurred, (3) all political prisoners had been freed, and (4) all political parties were legally permitted.

Carnival also said it has requested approval its other brands to travel to Cuba in the future. Jeff Flake, who recently helped reintroduce the Freedom for Americans to Travel to Cuba Act.

Restrictions on American agricultural and telecommunications equipment to Cuba were eased, and it became much easier for Americans to travel to Cuba as regular air travel between the countries was restored.

In measured tones, the Cuban statement noted the changes and said Trump's announcement went against the wishes of the majority of Americans who prefer lifting the embargo altogether and supported the extremist view of a minority of Cuban Americans. US investors and tourists will not be permitted to engage with the military's tourism and manufacturing conglomerates.

It is not entirely clear how broad these restrictions will be, as apparently current deals, such as Marriot's management of the Gaviota-owned Four Points Sheraton in Havana, will be allowed to continue.

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According to the New York-based Human Rights Watch, Trump has plenty of human rights issues to address at home. The changes will largely affect the country's travel and tourism industry. He's warned that returning to a "get tough" policy hurts everyday Cubans whose livelihoods are increasingly rooted in travel and tourism. These results may explain why Donald Trump lost Miami-Dade County and the surrounding areas.

If Trump decides to keep up the Obama-era policies towards Cuba, he could face some significant backlash from Republican Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart and Sen.

While we won't know exactly how the Treasury Department will enforce the President's broad directive until the regulations are drafted, it appears likely that the "People-to-People" exchanges under which many thousands of Americans visited Cuba past year will be limited by the new requirement to contract with a tourism service provider like the Vermont based CAFS Travel.

The embargo, which Cubans call a blockade, has been condemned by the global community every year for causing suffering among Cuban people, especially women and children.

The new rules restricting financial dealings with Cuban companies with links to the country's military and intelligence services could stall future American development on the island. With Cubans having increased access to information and entertainment sources from around the world, as well as more contact with worldwide visitors, there is a worry that any protests or widespread social anger would quickly overwhelm the regime's means of control.

At one point picking up Trump's trademark Twitter style, Rodriguez quoted the United States president's statement in Saudi Arabia that the U.S. is "not here to tell other people how to live", but that his Cuba announcement was "quite the opposite".

Moreover, Obama's efforts allowed Americans to use credit and debit cards in the country and to send money to relatives in Cuba from the United States. He was killed during a gunfight after a traffic stop on the New Jersey Turnpike in 1973.

Presidents who have been successful in achieving their foreign policy goals sometimes are described as having a doctrine. Let us not forget that the hallmark of the Cuban regime's barbarity is that the regime thugs beat in the streets the mothers, wives, and daughters of political dissidents as the latter walk to church together.



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