Trump to Tighten Cuba Travel Policies But Doesn't Reverse Them

People participate in the gay pride parade during the celebration of the day against homophobia and transphobia in Havana

People participate in the gay pride parade during the celebration of the day against homophobia and transphobia in Havana

And Trump has made repealing Obamacare, the former president's sweeping health care law, a top priority.

"We also very much want to see that kind of expansion of commercial interaction with Cuba", the official said.

Rubio, a longtime critic of the Castro regime and of former President Barack Obama's policies thawing USA relations with the communist island, gave a broad preview of Trump's "strategic and targeted changes" in a Facebook live post this morning.

This is, in a word, ridiculous.

"We are at an important moment in the relationship between the United States and Cuba", Sorenson said. It painted Cuba as a terrorist nation for its support of Nelson Mandela in the fight against apartheid.

Engage Cuba, a group lobbying for an end to the embargo, estimates that 10,000 United States jobs in aviation and the cruise business already depend on Cuba.

During a November 2 appearance in Miami, Trump told supporters, "we will cancel Obama's one-sided Cuban deal made by executive order, if we do not get the deal we want, and the deal that people living in Cuba and here deserve".

Now Fidel Castro, the leader of Cuba's revolution, is dead. The Soviet Union is no more; the Cold War is over.

The restrictions may have a chilling effect on Americans looking to travel to Cuba, which enjoyed large support from both Democrats and Republicans.

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Embassies in Washington and in Havana will remain open, sources tell CNN, and Cuban American travel and remittances remain unaffected. Trump's hatred of Obama is apparent.

Depending on the extent of the new regulations, the volume of U.S. travelers to Cuba could fall back to the levels registered prior to December 17, 2014, when Obama announced the beginning of the normalization of U.S. -Cuba relations.

In the campaign, Trump pledged in Florida to overturn Obama's opening. Those heading to the airport Friday can also expect slowdowns on State Road 836, the Dolphins Expressway, as Trump arrives and departs from MIA, as well as possible delayed flights to accommodate Air Force One. Last year, Diaz-Balart placed similar language into a House budget bill before Democrats forced it out. It is time for Trump to try something new.

Obama's policy of engagement, however halting, has already shown results. USA citizens may only visit Cuba if their activities pertain to government affairs, journalism, research, education, religious or humanity projects, family, or business. It put the cost at as much as $3.5 billion in lost revenues and 10,000 jobs lost in the travel industry over the next four years. On the other hand, several business and political organizations, including the U.S. Agricultural Coalition for Cuba and Engage Cuba, have advocated maintaining the existing situation and lifting the U.S. embargo of the island.

Once more the right of Americans to travel would be sacrificed, in the name of what?

It is notable, however, that Trump's administration is taking a stand against Cuba's human rights abuses when it has made a habit of glossing over the same concerns with countries such as Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Turkey. Saudi Arabia, like Cuba, is well known for human rights abuses.

Some business groups, meanwhile, lobbied the Trump administration to keep the Obama rules in place, including hotel and airline interest seeking to expand business into the island.

"It has not led to greater freedom in Cuba", one official said.

To Ferrer, in her fourth year of Latin American studies at the University of Florida, such a move would squander years of progress towards a normalisation of relations between the countries - and rob many Cubans on the island their chance to rise above poverty.

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