Cuba: Washington eases its threat of sanctions

Cuba: Washington atténue sa menace de sanctions

Photo: Yamil Lage Agence France-Presse
The United States wants to keep the pressure on Cuba, at a time when they accuse the authorities of Havana to support the regime of Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela.

The United States did not put in execution their threat of opening the door to thousands of lawsuits against foreign companies, especially european, operating in Cuba, limiting for the moment of their decision, primarily symbolic, to entities that are cuban.

Chapter III of the Helms-Burton act of 1996 would theoretically, including cuban exiles, to sue before the federal courts in american companies that have made gains thanks to companies nationalized after the revolution of 1959 in the Caribbean island. But the american presidents, successive still suspended this clause every six months, to avoid angering the allies of the United States whose businesses would be threatened. At the time of adoption of the act, in 1996, the us State department had estimated that there were up to 200 000 potential complaints, which have been frozen and could be delivered in the saddle if this article was fully activated.

However, the government of Donald Trump, who accuses Cuba of being part of a “troika” of tyranny ” in Latin America, with Venezuela and Nicaragua, had threatened in recent weeks to enable the chapter III. Finally, the chief of american diplomacy, Mike Pompeo, had announced on Monday that some complaints were going to be for the first time allowed in the framework of this law, starting on 19 march. But this does, in fact, only a limited list of entities and cuban businesses, for the most part controlled at least partially by the army, the intelligence or security services of cuban.

Even in the case of a joint venture between foreign companies and cuban, ” you can’t attack the entity cuban “, ” this action does not authorize prosecution of a european company, japanese or a third country other “, assured Monday, a State department official.

The United States want to keep the pressure on Cuba, at a time when they accuse the authorities of Havana to support the regime of Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela, they are trying by all means to push them towards the exit. The suspension of chapter III of the Helms-Burton act for all of the other complaints is not renewed, this time for a month, until April 17, to observe the effects of the decision announced Monday, and possibly change it.