The Newest: EU, Canada vow to protect their firms in Cuba

The Latest About the Trump administration’s position on Cuba (all times local):

10:55 a.m.

The European Union and Canada are joining forces to protect their businesses following the U.S opened the door for suits from foreign firms operating on possessions Cuba captured from Americans.

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini (feh-deh-REE’-kah moh-gehr-EE’-nee) and Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland state the U.S. move”to renege on its longstanding commitment” to prevent such lawful actions”is regrettable.”

Mogherini and Freeland state at a joint statement issued Wednesday they are”decided to work together to look after the interests” in their businesses.

They warn that both EU and Canadian laws make it possible for counter-claims against any U.S. lawsuits”so the U.S. choice to permit suits against foreign companies can only result in an unnecessary spiral of actions.”

The decision is a setback to Havana’s attempts to draw on foreign exchange into the island.


9:35 a.m.

The Trump government is opening the door for lawsuits against foreign companies operating Cuba seized from Americans .

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (pahm-PAY’-oh) said Wednesday he will not renew a pub on lawsuit in area for two years. The decision is a blow to the efforts to draw on foreign investment into the island of Havana.

President Donald Trump is stepping up pressure to isolate embattled President Nicolas Maduro, who’s holding power with help from different countries, such as China, Cuba and Russia.

It helps suits by Cubans who became U.S. taxpayers years after their properties were taken.

Pompeo states,”Those taxpayers’ opportunities for prosecution have been put out of reach for 2 decades.”

Stern responses were prompted by word of this movement from Europe and Canada, that have vowed to protect their businesses.


9:15 a.m.

Spain’s government spokeswoman says authorities will offer support to some Spanish company affected by potential U.S. suits filed against foreign companies in Cuba.

Isabel Celaa stated Wednesday”that the Spanish government could give its funding to Spanish firms at Cuba.” She did not elaborate on what type of service could take.

Celaa told reporters after the Cabinet meeting Madrid knows the European Union plans to throw its weight against European companies having legitimate business interests beyond the bloc.

The U.S. government is expected to announce later Wednesday it will permit lawsuits against foreign companies doing business in houses seized from Americans following Cuba’s 1959 revolution.


8:20 a.m.

The European Union is warning that it stands out to safeguard the interests of European firms or individuals conducting business in Cuba who might be hit by any U.S. lawsuits filed against foreign firms there.

The administration of president Donald Trump is expected to announce Wednesday that it will permit lawsuits against foreign firms doing business in possessions seized from Americans after the 1959 revolution of Cuba.

European Commission spokesman Alexander Winterstein states the EU”is prepared to protect European interests, including European investments and the economic activities of EU entities and individuals within their relationships with Cuba.”

Winterstein underlines the EU’s”strong opposition to the extraterritorial application of unilateral restrictive measures, which it considers contrary to international law”

He’s declined to say what measures are being contemplated.


7:40 a.m.

A senior officer in Madrid says that the Spanish government is asking the European Union to battle a U.S. movement to allow lawsuits against foreign companies operating in possessions seized from Americans in post-revolution Cuba.

The move, announced Tuesday, breaks with just two decades of U.S. policy on the staircase.

Spain, that has big investments in resorts and other industries in Cuba, will ask the EU to dispute the decision from the World Trade Organization, a senior administration official told The Associated Press.

The official requested anonymity because she wasn’t authorized to discuss the issue. She added that Spain was committed to defending its interests to the island.

Firms from France, Canada and Great Britain among countries also conduct business in houses nationalized after Fidel Castro took power in 1959.

— By Aritz Parra


12:05 a.m.

The Trump government is preparing to alter a longstanding U.S. policy on Cuba.

The government is expected to announce Wednesday that it will allow suits against firms doing business in lands seized after Cuba’s 1959 revolution.

A law passed in 1996, the Helms-Burton Act, gives Americans the right to sue the businesses that operate from other properties, tobacco factories, distilleries and hotels after Fidel Castro took power, that Cuba nationalized. The act even allows lawsuits by Cubans who became U.S. citizens years following their possessions were obtained.

However, each U.S. president because Bill Clinton has suspended that the crucial clause to avoid trade clashes and a potential bulk of suits that could stop any future compensation with Cuba over nationalized possessions.