Cuba decries US allowing lawsuits over confiscated property

World Today

Cuba has denounced a recent U.S. move allowing lawsuits against Cuban firms over property confiscated following the 1959 revolution.

CGTN’s Luis Chirino reports from Havana.

The United States has significantly ramped up economic pressure on Cuba following Wednesday’s move to allow lawsuits against foreign firms over property seized from Americans following Fidel Castro’s 1959 revolution.

This decision, effective May 2, was announced Wednesday by National Security Advisor John Bolton and was immediately met with a strong reaction from the Cuban government.

“We’ll always be willing to have a dialogue on an absolutely respectful basis,” Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez said. “But if the U.S. government has adopted a confrontation route, we will not hesitate to defend the achievements of the revolution at any price.”

Cuban President Miguel Diaz Canel tweeted the Cuban people will not surrender and saying, “In Cuba, we are the boss.” 

The Communist Party’s newspaper ‘Granma’ published an editorial condemning the U.S. move that will allow suits against companies operating on properties which it termed as legally nationalized and not confiscated as Washington argues. 

Reaction to the U.S. decision also came from the European Union’s Ambassador to Cuba Alberto Navarro during an EU-Cuba environment forum in Havana. 

“The extraterritorial enforcement of the U.S. embargo is illegal, it runs contrary to international law and in my view it is immoral,” EU Ambassador’s to Cuba, Alberto Navarro said. “It’s been 60 years of suffering for the Cuban people.”

Allowing lawsuits, under a provision known as Title Three of the Helms-Burton Act, could lead to billions of dollars in legal claims and hurt Cuba’s effort to attract more foreign investment.

 The U.S. also announced  tighter travel restrictions to Cuba and limits to family remittances changes that were not welcomed by every day Cubans.

“This worsens the situation in Cuba because the Cuban community in the U.S. is large and sends important remittances which do not solve all our problems but do help us,” Jorge Fallarero said.

For many, Washington’s decision to enact Title III of the Helms-Burton Law and to impose new sanctions on Cuba will have an impact on the country’s economy and social life and even worsen the already deteriorated relations between Cuba and the United States.