President Trump Hardens Policy Towards Cuban Government

June 19 05:54 2017

Reversing yet another policy move by Barack Obama, President Trump plans to re-institute restrictions on travel to Cuba and USA business dealings with entities tied to the Cuban military and intelligence services, officials said Thursday.

In a Thursday briefing call, reporters pressed officials on why the Trump administration is emphasizing Cuba’s human rights issues when the White House has previously demonstrated interest in working with other problematic regimes.

During the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump vowed to reverse the Obama administration’s policies that have “enriched the Cuban military regime and increased repressions on the island”, an administration official said.

Though they do not go as far as some feared, the Trump policy changes laid out in the Miami Herald and Politico on Thursday take a harsher stance than the relative rapprochement in recent years and could dramatically affect US business on the island. Trump wants to see improved human rights, free elections and the release of political prisoners, officials said. The order would allow continued expenditure linked to operations at the Guantanamo Naval Base against the will of the Cuban people and Government, and would also keep the corresponding funds for the United States embassy in Havana. Trump reportedly cited human-rights violations in Cuba as justification for a new USA approach; video continues to circulate on the Internet of a man, at a Havana May Day celebration, who is crushed and carried off by others as he runs with an American flag over his head as other revelers look on.

Under President Barack Obama, Washington eased travel and business restrictions with Cuba.

South Florida’s Cuban-American community sounded off on President Donald Trump’s upcoming visit to Little Havana, where he is expected to announce changes to the current USA policy with Cuba.

Yet Trump is unlikely to undo all U.S. Both men plan to be on hand when Trump announces the changes in Miami’s Little Havana neighborhood, Friday afternoon.

What specific changes the Cuban government would have to make to their human rights approach in order to begin loosening relations again was not made clear. “President Obama attempted to change that”, Sanchez said.

“President Trump will treat the Castro regime as a malevolent dictatorship that it is”, Diaz-Balart said. “Tomorrow is going to be a good day for the Cuban people”, said Rubio.

These types of trips focused on connecting USA travelers with Cubans in their communities and homes, creating an educational environment where travelers can experience what everyday life is like for Cubans.

Each week, ‘Can He Do That?’ examines the powers and limitations of the American presidency, focusing on one area where Trump is seemingly breaking precedent.

Ransome wants Trump to keep the relationship with Cuba open, but he understands that relationship is a two way street.

“This is a limitation on what we did, not a reversal of what we did”, Rhodes said in an interview.

However, Trump will stop short of closing embassies or breaking diplomatic relations restored in 2015 after more than five decades of hostility and will not cut off recently resumed direct U.S. -Cuba commercial flights – though his more restrictive policy seems certain to dampen new economic ties.

Americans will still be able to visit Cuba, though they will need special visas of which enforcement will become much stricter, but they will not be able to spend any money at a business owned by a GAESA, other than a few exceptions, notably airports. Obama and his aides argued that commerce and travel between the countries, which has blossomed since he relaxed the rules, would make his policy irreversible.

17 2016 shows Cuban and US flags in Havana. President Donald Trump's administration will press Cuba on human rights progress a top US official said

President Trump Hardens Policy Towards Cuban Government
 
 
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