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Cuban remittances curbed by US

The Cuban government condemned the new measures announced last week by the United States, which further strengthen the embargo imposed on the island by limiting family remittances and financial transactions through third countries.

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez rejected “vigorously” the new sanctions, which he considered an “opportunistic attempt to divide the Cubans” and accused the United States of “lying brazenly” to hold Cuba responsible for “their failure to force the overthrow of the Bolivarian government” of Venezuela.

“They will not break the will of the Cubans and the universal rejection against the blockade will grow,” the foreign minister said on Twitter.

Hours earlier, the US Office of Foreign Assets Control announced that the amount Cubans residing in the North American country can send to their relatives on the island will be limited to $1,000 per quarter.

The financial control agency under the Department of the Treasury also indicated that as of Oct. 9, remittances to close relatives of Cuban blacklisted officials and members of the Communist Party of Cuba will be illegal.

After the reestablishment of full diplomatic relations between Cuba and the US, ending five decades of hostility initiated in full Cold War, President Barack Obama (2009-2017) lifted the limits on remittances.

Another prohibition announced on Friday by OFAC affects so-called “U-turn” transactions, which will prevent banking institutions subject to US jurisdiction to process certain transfers of funds to Cuba even if they originate and end up outside the United States.

The United States believes that the new sanctions will serve to “financially isolate the Cuban regime,” which is responsible for the “oppression” of its own people and “support for other dictatorships throughout the region, such as the illegitimate regime of (Venezuelan President Nicolás) Maduro.”

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