Cuba Denounces Trump's New Measures

The Latest: Cuba rejects 'hostile rhetoric' of Trump

A street sweeper cleans the sidewalk under a mural painting depicting U.S. President Donald Trump, in Havana, Cuba, Friday, June 16, 2017.

"The government of Cuba denounces the new measures toughening the embargo" imposed since 1962, according to the statement.

It analyzes the virtues of Obama's approach, which had recognized Cuba's independence, sovereignty and self-determination, and the Cuban government in a civilized coexistence relationship.

United States officials will move to enforce an existing ban on tourism by eliminating individual people-to-people exchanges that had been allowed under Obama and had opened a back door to tourism.

"America has rejected the Cuban people's oppressors", Trump said in Miami's Little Havana, the cradle of Cuban-American resistance to Castro's government.

The Cuban government has withstood the US trade embargo for more than a half century and will not make political concessions to the United States due to economic pressure, said Carlos Alzugaray, a retired Cuban diplomat.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, typically supportive of GOP presidents, predicted the changes would limit prospects for "positive change on the island", while Rep. Tom Emmer, R-Minn., said Trump's policy was "misguided" and will hurt the U.S. economically.

The main changes are a ban on USA companies.

The venue is named after a leader of the failed US-backed Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba in 1961 against Fidel Castro's revolutionary government.

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Hundreds of millions of US dollars flowed into privately owned businesses in Cuba, The Associated Press reported, spurring the growth of a nascent middle-class that could thrive independent from the government.

"We can not continue to bring concessions to the Cuban government", he said. "The last two years have shown that the two countries can cooperate and coexist in a civilized way", it said.

Pointing to human rights abuses, Trump said, "My administration will not hide from it, excuse it, or glamorize it and we will never ever be blind to it". Emmer, Crawford and five other House Republicans have warned that rolling back U.S. Cuba policy could threaten new bilateral agreements with Havana to combat human trafficking, illicit drugs and cyber crimes. Previously, Cubans who reached US shores earned automatic visas.

In essence, Mr. Trump's announcement on Friday allowed him to claim fulfillment of a campaign promise, while leaving a vast portion of the Obama policies intact. But it makes some exceptions, including for air and sea travel, according to U.S. officials.

The biggest change in travel policy will be that Americans making educational people-to-people trips, one of the most popular authorized categories, can no longer go to the island on their own but only in groups.

However, the U.S. International Trade Administration told ABC News it hasn't yet released its 2016 statistics on outbound travel and therefore could not confirm those numbers from the Cuban Ministry on U.S. tourism.

The policy also allows Americans to continue patronizing state-run hotels and other businesses that are not directly linked with Cuba's military and state-security services. "And we are going to be safeguarding those people", he said.

After decades of Cold War enmity, he oversaw a diplomatic rapprochement with the United States under Trump's predecessor Barack Obama. The US president has been accompanied by Vice President Mike Pence, several cabinet members, Florida Gov. Rick Scott, congressmen of Cuban origin like Marco Rubio, Mario Diaz Balart and Carlos Curbelo and representatives of Cuban dissidents, Trump mentioned the Dissidents Jose Daniel Ferrer and Berta Soler, who were not allowed to travel to Miami, but "are here with us".

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