Trump returns to Florida to unveil Cuba policy

Trump returns to Florida to unveil Cuba policy

Trump returns to Florida to unveil Cuba policy

President Trump is preparing to announce new restrictions on travel and trade with Cuba, backtracking on the policy of greater engagement with the island pushed by his predecessor, Barack Obama.

President Trump's aides say that Mr. Hussein Obama's easing of United States restrictions has done nothing to advance political freedoms in Cuba, while benefiting the Cuban government financially. Rather, the administration "wants any benefits of commerce to go towards the Cuban people".

Pressing "pause" on a historic detente, President Donald Trump thrust the USA and Cuba back on a path toward open hostility Friday with a blistering denunciation of the island's communist government. They'll need to be sure they're not staying in hotels owned by the regime.

Trump is set to travel on Friday to Miami, where a source close to the deliberations says he will announce a prohibition on "financial transactions" with military-backed tourism conglomerate GAESA.

According to media reports, Trump is set to announce in Miami on Friday a rollback to the thaw between Washington and Havana, a promise he made during his election campaign a year ago.

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.

"My gut feeling is that I think that we should continue to maintain President Obama's policy", said George Ransome, referring to sweeping changes made under the Obama Administration a few years ago.

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However, the biggest change has been in the flow of USA tourists to the island, so in terms of meeting expectations, the restoration of ties fell short, added Torrico.

However, Trump's Cuba policy is not being seen as a blanket travel ban by the transport companies. That includes restricting transactions by USA citizens with hotels and other entities associated with the Cuban military. There will also be no changes to the current Wet Feet-Dry Feet policy. While the 12 categories of authorized travel to Cuba will still remain, a subcategory - individual people-to-people travel - is on the chopping block.

Of major note, there will be no change to the "wet foot, dry foot" policy and the USA embassy in Cuba will also remain open.

According to Trump's eight-page directive, US businesses will be restricted from transacting with Cuban businesses tied to the country's military - although recently reestablished USA commercial travel to Cuba will be allowed to continue, The Miami Herald reported. These visitors will be allowed to pay bank fees at the military-run bank and rent private properties such as those offered by Airbnb.

"The airlines might complain that they will see less demand for travel because travelers can no longer spend money at the military-run properties", Rubio told Politico.

The new Cuba policy will prohibit transactions with businesses controlled by the Cuban regime, will only allow Americans to travel to Cuba as a part of a tour group, and reiterate the importance of extraditing fugitives, according to senior administration officials who briefed members of the press Thursday. And Mark Feierstein, who helped negotiate the December 2014 opening of relations with Cuba as the senior director for Western Hemisphere affairs in Obama's National Security Council, gives us an inside look at exactly how we got here with Cuba.

The influx in Americans going to see the sights has resulted in the rebirth of cruises and air service from the the island, with nonstop flights available from NY to Havana.

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