On Wednesday, during a memorial event with veterans of the 1961 “Bay of Pigs” invasion of Cuba meant to overthrow the Castro communist regime, President Trump and Vice President Pence announced new economic sanctions on the communist country.
According to American Military News, “Trump announced that the U.S. Treasury Department would prohibit U.S. travelers from staying at properties owned by the Cuban government and further restrict the importation of Cuban products like Cuban alcohol and tobacco. Trump said, ‘These actions will ensure that U.S. dollars do not fund the Cuban regime and go directly to the Cuban people.’”
Trump also said that he will also place strict sanctions on the communist dictatorships of Nicaragua and Venezuela.
Secretary of State Pompeo released a statement with more details:
Today, the Department of State is announcing the creation of the Cuba Prohibited Accommodations (CPA) List. The CPA List includes 433 properties that are owned or controlled by the Cuban regime or certain well-connected insiders.
The Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced regulatory changes today to the Cuban Assets Control Regulations (CACR) restricting certain transactions related to lodging at properties identified on the CPA List.
The Cuban government’s profits from properties in the hospitality industry owned or controlled by the Cuban government, senior regime officials, Cuban Communist Party leadership, and their families, disproportionately benefit the Cuban government, all at the expense of the Cuban people, who continue to face repression at the hands of the regime. Authorized travelers should instead stay in private accommodations, or casas particulares, owned and operated by legitimately independent entrepreneurs.
OFAC’s action today also restricts importing Cuba-origin alcohol and tobacco products; attending or organizing certain professional meetings or conferences in Cuba; and participating in and organizing certain public performances, clinics, workshops, competitions, and exhibitions in Cuba. Taken together, these actions seek to deprive the Cuban regime of the resources it uses to oppress the Cuban people and fund its interference in Venezuela, to the detriment of the citizens of both countries.
The United States will continue to support the Cuban people in their desire for a democratic government, economic prosperity, and respect for human rights, including freedom of religion, expression, and association.
Fox News reports that the Bay of Pigs Veterans Association endorsed Trump for president in 2016 and did again for his reelection.
Trump also spoke about his 2017 reversal of the Obama-Biden administration’s diplomacy attempts with Cuba, saying that “[T]he Obama-Biden administration made a weak, pathetic, one-sided deal with the Castro dictatorship that betrayed the Cuban people and enriched the communist regime. I canceled the Obama-Biden sellout to the Castro regime.”
The President affirmed his commitment to the defeat of communism and a free Cuba, saying that “[W]e will not lift sanctions until all political prisoners are freed, freedoms of assembly are respected, all political parties are legalized, and free elections are scheduled.”
You can watch the full speech here:
Trump’s decisive actions further highlight his desire to support the Cuban people in their struggle for democracy. His staunch condemnation for communist tyranny and repression is yet another expression of his strength and why we need him as the leader of the free world.