CUBAN President Miguel Díaz-Canel says Cuba will never negotiate with the United States under pressure and threats.
In a Tweet, President Díaz-Canel said Cuba clearly rejected the aggressive policy dictated by the President Donald Trump government against the Caribbean country.
The Cuban Head of State invoked revolutionary icon Fidel Castro’s words when he said that, “honour, the country and dignity are not negotiated, just like independence, sovereignty, history and glory are not negotiated either.”
President Díaz-Canel condemned the recent measures announced by the US that intensify the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed on the island for nearly 60 years.
Cuba says the new escalation further reinforces the encirclement at a cost for the Cuban economy that in 2018 exceeded $134 billion at current prices and “the figure of $933 billion dollars, taking into account the depreciation of the dollar against the value of gold in the international market.”
Announcing the ban of American cruise ship travelling to Cuba amid new harsh sanctions against Havana recently, commerce secretary Wilbur Ross accused former US president Barack Obama of having made too many concessions to communist Cuba.
The changes the Commerce and Treasury departments would implement under the Cuba Sanctions Rules are aimed at reversing the thawing of relations achieved between Havana and Washington in 2014.
Washington said the actions mark a continued commitment towards implementing the National Security Presidential Memorandum signed by President Trump on June 16, 2017 titled “Strengthening the Policy of the United States Toward Cuba.”
“These policies continue to work to channel economic activities away from the Cuban military, intelligence, and security services. The Treasury changes will take effect on June 5, 2019 when the regulations are published in the Federal Register,” it stated.
Major elements of the changes in the revised regulations include ending ‘Group People-to-People Travel’.
“In accordance with the newly announced changes to non-family travel to Cuba, OFAC is amending the regulations to remove the authorisation for group people-to-people educational travel. OFAC’s regulatory changes include a “grandfathering” provision, which provides that certain group people-to-people educational travel that previously was authorised will continue to be authorised where the traveller had already completed at least one travel-related transaction (such as purchasing a flight or reserving accommodation) prior to June 4, 2019,” the statement reads.
The other aspect is ending Exports of Passenger Vessels, Recreational Vessels, and Private Aircraft.
“BIS, in coordination with OFAC, is amending its EAR to make passenger and recreational vessels and private and corporate aircraft ineligible for license exception and to establish a general policy of denial for license applications involving those vessels and aircraft,” stated the Treasury and Commerce departments.
Cuba is the only country in the world where US citizens are not allowed to visit as tourists but certain forms of organised group travel, known as “people-to-people” travel, had been allowed until Tuesday’s announcement.
“Cuba remains communist, and the United States, under the previous administration, made too many concessions to one of our historically most aggressive adversaries,” said Ross. “The Trump Administration recognises the threat Cuba’s government poses in the region, and the Commerce Department is acting to limit commercial activity that provides revenue for the Cuban regime. Holding other countries accountable remains a focus for this Administration and we will remain vigilant.”