Havana, Jan 29 (Prensa Latina) The U.S. government fined an American company for alleged violations to the economic, commercial and financial blockade that country has maintained against Cuba, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MINREX) said here. On 20 January, prior to the announcement of the new regulations by the Departments of Treasury and Commerce on Cuba, the U.S. firm WATG Holdings Inc. was penalized for $140, 400 USD for infringing the regime of unilateral sanctions against the Caribbean island.
According to a report by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the U.S. Department of Treasury, WATG subsidiary in the United Kingdom, Wimberly Allison Tong and Goo, worked for a Qatari company in the design and architecture of a hotel draft in Cuba, for which it received three payments.
OFAC ensures that those expenditures took place between October 2009 and May 2010, and amounted to $356,714 USD.
This is the first fine imposed by U.S. authorities in 2016, and reaffirms the continuation of the application of the blockade with marked extraterritorial nature, despite the new bilateral context, MINREX states.
The information posted in the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said “the continuity of the mechanisms of economic and commercial pursuit by the U.S. government against our country in the framework of the new projection started on December 17, 2014 is contradictory.”
On that date, President, Raul Castro, and U.S. President, Barack Obama, announced the decision to restore diplomatic relations, and begin a process towards the normalization of bilateral ties.
Since then, the U.S. government has fined about six American and foreign entity for an accumulated value of $2.8 billion, the note adds.
So far, fines are totaling 47 during the Obama administration (2009-2016) for violating regulations against Cuba and other countries, and its accumulated value amounted to $14.3 billion USD.
Cuba and the United States restored diplomatic relations on July 20, 2015, and their respective interests sections became embassies.
The Cuban authorities have reiterated that to completely normalize those ties, Washington should lift the economic blockade, return the territory illegally occupied by the U.S. naval base in Guantanamo Bay, stop illegal transmissions to the island, and suspend actions intended to subvert internal order in the Caribbean nation.