Published: Sat, April 20, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

NSA Bolton Defends Change in Policy on Cuba

NSA Bolton Defends Change in Policy on Cuba

Under the new policy, Americans may send up to $1,000 per person every three months.

The Trump administration also added five entities owned by the Cuban military to its restricted list.

Announcing the crackdown in Coral Gables, Fla., on Wednesday, national security adviser John Bolton called Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua the "troika of tyranny" and said the new measures would "end the glamorization of socialism and communism". The new measures restricted Cuba's border policies and allowed exiles to sue for properties seized by the former Fidel Castro-led Cuban government, The Washington Post reported.

President Donald Trump's national security adviser John Bolton says the move is aimed at restricting USA transactions with the bank and cutting off the bank's access to US currency.

"The EU reiterates a strong opposition to the extraterritorial application of unilateral restrictive measures which is considers contrary to global law", a spokesman for the EU executive told a briefing in Brussels.

In their letter, Mogherini and Malmstrom urged Pompeo to stick to what they said was an agreement on managing policy differences over Cuba under which the USA waived Title III and the European Union suspended a threatened case at the World Trade Organisation against Washington.

"This is just the beginning", Bolton said.

Bolton spoke hours after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced a new policy allowing lawsuits against foreign firms operating on properties Cuba seized from Americans after the 1959 revolution.

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Canada and the EU pledged to work together in the World Trade Organization and ban the enforcement or recognition of American court orders against Canadian or European companies.

In response, Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez tweeted that the US move "is an attack against International Law and the sovereignty of Cuba & third states", adding that aggressive escalation of the United States against Cuba will fail.

The speech at the Bay of Pigs Veterans Association is to be delivered on the 58th anniversary of the United States' failed 1961 invasion of the island, an attempt to overthrow the Cuban government. "We will oppose them".

It was signed by European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom, along with Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland. Cuba has trained Venezuelan security forces to repress civilians and support Maduro, Bolton said, calling Maduro "quite simply a Cuban puppet".

The complete lifting of the ban could allow billions of dollars in legal claims to move forward in USA courts and likely antagonize Canada and Europe, whose companies have significant business holdings in Cuba.

"We will always be willing to have a dialogue based on absolute respect, but if the USA government has chosen a confrontational path we will not hesitate to defend the gains of the revolution at any cost", Rodriguez later said on state television. The decision is a blow to Havana's efforts to draw foreign investment to the island.

The move marks a sharp departure from previous administrations and opens the door for a windfall of legislation against foreign firms operating in the island nation.

Pompeo says, "Those citizens' opportunities for justice have been put out of reach for two decades".

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