Trump Set to Take Backwards Step on Cuba Policy

President Donald Trump on Friday is set to put a chill on the thawed relations between the U.S. and Cuba his predecessor put in place just three years ago.

In an announcement in Miami, Trump will partially roll back Obama’s measures, which the new administration sees as a failed “appeasement” effort. NPR writes that the president 

“While not a full reversal of the Obama opening,” writes Ben Rhodes, the architect of the rapprochement under the Obama administration,

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On Thursday Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) said she was “appalled and saddened” by the reported reversal, calling it “a completely unnecessary step backwards” that “makes no sense and achieves nothing.”

“Withdrawing from Cuba cannot and will not achieve our goals,” Lee stated. “As President Obama recognized, progress demands open dialogue and mutual cooperation between our two nations.”

Amnesty International USA similarly cautioned against a Cuba policy reversal, saying it would harm both nations.

“Increased political dialogue, travel, and trade between the U.S. and Cuba is critical to advancing human rights in both countries,” said Marselha Gonçalves Margerin, advocacy director for the Americas at the organization.

“If President Trump returns to the Cold War rhetoric of isolation, we will revert to a politicization of human rights on both sides, which will be detrimental to advancing independent scrutiny of Cuba’s human rights situation,” she continued.

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