US targets Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua with new sanctions


Washington, Apr 18 (IANS): US President Donald Trump's administration has targeted Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua with a wave of new sanctions that also further restricted travel and remittances to the three countries.

On Wednesday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that the US will enforce a controversial provision of the decades-old trade embargo on Cuba that will allow American citizens to file lawsuits in US federal courts against businesses that operate on property seized by the Cuban government during the revolution, CNN reported.

Pompeo said Title III of the Helms-Burton Act, also known as the Libertad Act, would be implemented in full effective May 2.

"Any person or company doing business in Cuba should heed this announcement," Pompeo said in remarks at the State Department.

"Implementing Title III in full means a chance at justice for Cuban Americans who have long sought relief from Fidel Castro and his lackeys seizing property without compensation."

The move comes as the Trump administration attempts to ratchet up the pressure on Nicolas Maduro's regime in Venezuela and countries that they see as sustaining it.

"The Cuban regime has for years exported its tactics of intimidation, repression and violence. They've exported this to Venezuela in direct support of the former Maduro regime," Pompeo said.

Also on Wednesday, National Security Adviser John Bolton announced additional restrictions on Cuba, including visas and travel, as well as new sanctions on Venezuela and Nicaragua.

"At this moment, Havana continues to prop up Maduro and help him sustain the brutal suffering of the Venezuelan people," he said. "As President Trump has said Maduro is quite simply a Cuban puppet."

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