Trump administration ends MLB/Cuba baseball deal

Trump administration ends MLB/Cuba baseball deal

Trump administration ends MLB/Cuba baseball deal

"The pressures applied by these political figures led to the cancellation momentarily of an agreement that was backed by the majority of the USA society and identified as a formula to eliminate harmful practices such as human trafficking", added the statement from the FCB.

The White House argued the FCB is part of the Cuban government and not an NGO as originally stipulated in the pact, which caused the deal to be nullified as trade with Cuba is banned due to Washington's six-decade old embargo on the island.

The agreement - initially reached in December - would have allowed Cuban players to sign with Major League Baseball teams, receive their full signing bonus, and the CBF would, in turn, receive an additional 25% of that bonus as a "release fee". It's definitely hard for a lot of Cuban players who are not playing at this level here in the States. The deal in effect would allow Cuban players to circumvent the United States economic embargo on Havana.

Under the agreement, players who met specific criteria could sign with major league teams without repercussions, and would receive a signing bonus for doing so. It also allowed the Cuban government to claim a fee from Major League Baseball teams that drafted Cuban players.

Republican Senator Marco Rubio tweeted that the Cuban government essentially wanted "legalized trafficking of persons" in the accord with Major League Baseball.

The Cuban Baseball Federation called the Trump administration's announcement a political move.

National Security Council spokesman Garrett Marquis said in a statement that "The US does not support actions that would institutionalize a system by which a Cuban government entity garnishes the wages of hard-working athletes who simply seek to live and compete in a free society".

"A payment to the Cuban Baseball Federation is a payment to the Cuban government", the Treasury Department said in the letter obtained by ESPN.

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"The deal with Major League Baseball is an attempt to stop human trafficking, encourage cooperation and elevate the level of baseball", the Cuban Baseball Federation said on Twitter. "Any contrary idea is false news".

Major League Baseball defended the plan.

The agreement reached in December between MLB and the Cuban Baseball Federation was the culmination of more than three years of negotiations.

Under the deal, the MLB would be permitted to scout and recruit Cuban baseball players without them having to undertake a risky defection to get to the United States.

The Trump administration decision was "a win for human smugglers in the Caribbean basin and a loss for just about everyone else impacted by this policy", according to Cuba Study Group's executive director, Ricardo Herrero.

But now the deal is being canceled.

As part of a tougher overall approach, the Trump administration is planning to revoke that decision, forcing teams to get licenses from the USA government before they can recruit Cuban players. One official told NBC News, "that agreement will not be able to proceed in its current form". Chicago White Sox slugger Jose Abreu had to eat a fake passport while on a flight from Haiti to the U.S.

Some Florida lawmakers had opposed the baseball agreement for being an accommodation with the Cuban government. "The question becomes what human trafficking is better than the other".

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