U.S. Extraterritorial Laws Against Cuba Discussed at U.N.

United Nations, May 4 (Prensa Latina) The impact of the U.S. government’s decision to activate the extraterritorial Title III of the Helms-Burton Act is also a matter of discussion this Saturday at the United Nations.
In fact, this was one of the main issues addressed in a recent meeting between Cuba’s alternate permanent representative to the United Nations, Ana Silvia Rodriguez, and the president of the General Assembly, Maria Fernanda Espinosa.

The head of the United Nations recalled the resolution approved in that instance on November 1, 2018 on the need to end the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the United States on Cuba.

That document expresses concern about the continued enactment and implementation of laws and regulations, such as the Helms-Burton Act of 12 March 1996, whose extraterritorial effects affect the sovereignty of other States.

It also harms the legitimate interests of entities or persons under its jurisdiction and the freedom of trade and navigation, the resolution states.

Members of the General Assembly last year reiterated their call on all states to refrain from enacting and implementing laws and measures of the kind mentioned, in accordance with their obligations under the UN Charter and international law.

On April 17 of this year, Washington announced that, as part of its 57-year blockade against Cuba, it will adopt new measures by activating Titles III and IV of the Helms-Burton Act on May 2.

Since its entry into force in 1996, the Helms-Burton Act has sought to universalize the blockade of Cuba through brutal and illegal pressure from Washington against third countries, their governments and companies, the Cuban ambassador said this week at a meeting of the Movement of on-Aligned Countries.

Thus, she said, she seeks to suffocate the island and to promote or increase the needs of the population with the purpose of imposing on Cuba a government that responds to the interests of the United States.

Although the blockade has remained in place, all U.S. administrations since 1996 suspended the application of these securities because of the damage they can cause to corporate interests, he said.

Likewise, they avoided taking such an aggressive measure given the strong opposition that this action arouses in the international community, including its close allies, due to its illegal extraterritorial scope, Rodriguez said.

Title III of the Helms-Burton Act allows legal actions to be brought in U.S. courts against Cuban and foreign entities and against businessmen from third countries who have invested or have businesses of any kind involving assets or properties nationalized by Cuba.

In addition, it intensifies the impediments to the entry into the United States of those company directors, and their families, who legally invest in Cuba in properties that were nationalized.

According to the Cuban diplomat, this law rests on two fundamental lies: the notion that the nationalizations carried out shortly after the revolutionary triumph of January 1959 were illegitimate or undue. The other, she added, is the erroneous assumption that Cuba constitutes a threat to the national security of the United States.


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