Trump to End 'Abusive' Individual People-to-People Travel to Cuba


MIAMI | In an overhaul of one of his predecessor's signature legacies, President Donald Trump will redraw US policy toward Cuba on Friday, tightening travel restrictions for Americans that had been loosened under President Barack Obama and banning USA business transactions with Cuba's vast military conglomerate.

"The policy the Trump administration is announcing regarding Cuba based on President Trump's core conviction that what the Cuban exile community is asking for is right and just", the White House said in a written statement to POLITICO.

"It is a promise that President Trump made and it is a promise that President Trump is keeping", the official said, citing a pledge Trump made to the Bay of Pigs Veterans Association as the group endorsed him for president during the campaign previous year. A source told Fox News the president is also expected to call for the release of Cuban political prisoners, but did not provide further details.

According to their report titled "Inside Marco Rubio's campaign top shape Trump's Cuba crackdown", eight officials who were involved in drafting President Trump's policy towards Cuba to feel his agenda achieved "escape velocity" thanks to Rubio.

Embassies in Havana and Washington will remain open.

President Trump will lay out his new Cuba policy in a speech in Miami that will shred parts of former President Barack Hussein Obama's opening to the Communist-ruled island after a Y 2014 diplomatic breakthrough between the 2 former Cold War foes.

Obama's policies reflect the fundamental belief that political change on the island will come by empowering the private sector in Cuba, like those businesswomen. The official said that there also won't be any changes to regulations on what Americans can bring back from Cuba.

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What followed over the next two years was the most significant change in US-Cuban relations since the 1959 revolution. And perhaps most important, what might be the consequences of rolling back pieces of U.S. -Cuba normalization?

Cheered by Cuba hardliners in both parties, Trump's new policy is broadly opposed by USA businesses eager to invest in Cuba.

They watched. almost two years ago, then-U.S. President Barack Obama pursued, and secured, a thaw in relations with its longtime nemesis Cuba and the Castro government.

He will also leave in place some other tangible changes made by his Democratic predecessor, including the resumption of direct U.S. -Cuba commercial flights, though Trump's more restrictive policy seems certain to dampen new economic ties overall. Remittances from people in America to Cubans won't be cut off.

Since the rapprochement with the U.S., the Cuban government has repeatedly said it will hold talks on any topic the United States wants to discuss.

But travelers could see stepped up enforcement when they return to the U.S. They are required to maintain full schedules and keep detailed logs while in Cuba - something that is rarely checked. "These people are benefitting greatly, not only from Americans spending money, but sharing their ideas with them", said Collin Laverty, founder and president of Cuba Educational Travel.

Critics of Obama's approach contend that many USA visitors have taken advantage of eased regulations and looser scrutiny to visit the island for pleasure trips. This new policy helps them.