Trump says will do all he can to help Cuban people
WEST PALM BEACH, Florida:
US President-elect Donald Trump said yesterday that his administration would “do all it can” once it takes office on Jan 20 to help boost freedom and prosperity for Cuban people after the death of Fidel Castro. Trump had threatened late in his upstart campaign for the White House that concerns about religious freedom in Cuba could prompt him to reverse President Barack Obama’s moves to open relations with the Cold War adversary after more than a half-century’s estrangement.
Obama said this was an emotional moment for Cubans and CubanAmericans and offered condolences to Castro’s family. “At this time of Fidel Castro’s passing, we extend a hand of friendship to the Cuban people,” he said in a statement, noting his administration had “worked hard to put the past behind us.” Republicans closely await what Trump - a billionaire businessman known for his unconventional approach to politics and policy - will do on Cuba once he takes office.
“Though the tragedies, deaths and pain caused by Fidel Castro cannot be erased, our administration will do all it can to ensure the Cuban people can finally begin their journey toward prosperity and liberty,”Trump said in a statement issued from his West Palm Beach, Florida, resort where he and his family are spending the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. “While Cuba remains a totalitarian island, it is my hope that today marks a move away from the horrors endured for too long, and toward a future in which the wonderful Cuban people finally live in the freedom they so richly deserve,” he added.
At a Miami rally in September, Trump said he would roll back Obama’s Cuban policy reforms unless Cuban leaders allowed religious freedom and freed political prisoners. “The next president can reverse them, and that I will do unless the Castro regime meets our demands,” Trump told supporters. A bloc of mostly Republican Cuban-American lawmakers has worked to keep tight restrictions on trade and travel with Cuba for years. Some Republican lawmakers broke with party orthodoxy to back Obama’s reforms, drawn by the economic benefits of restoring ties.— Reuters
In this Nov 10, 1971 file photo, Castro (center left) rides with Chile’s President Salvador Allende through a crowd waving communist flags in Santiago, Chile.
This file photo taken on Sept 4, 1999 shows Castro gesturing in Havana as he discusses his request to the president of the International Olympic Committee for an investigation into the treatment of certain Cuban athletes.