President Donald Trump has renewed for another twelve months the National Maritime Emergency on Cuba, under which the U.S. government exercises the right to regulate the anchorage and movement of vessels into Cuban territorial waters.
Cubadebate website recalls that the coercive measure was adopted by the Clinton Administration to prevent a presumed massive exodus of Cuban migrants into the U.S. when in reality, the Cuban website notes, the 1996 Cuban Adjustment Act was then and continues to be today the single main obstacle to orderly, safe migration flows between the two neighboring states.
Under the Cuban Adjustment Act, Cubans are allowed to become permanent U.S. residents if they had been present in the United States for at least one year and 1 month.
The Cuban website notes that in renewing the national maritime emergency, Trump failed to mention the benefits to both nations and peoples brought by the bilateral migratory agreement signed on January 12th, 2017, under which the U.S. agreed to repeal the so-called ‘Wet Feet, Dry Feet’ policy that essentially said that anyone who emigrated from Cuba and entered the United States, by whatever means, would be allowed to pursue residency a year later, and the Cuban Medical Professional Parole program of 2006, which encouraged Cuban doctors and nurses on overseas assignments to defect.
Cubadebate insists that since both arbitrary measures were repealed by the then-outgoing Obama Administration, there has been a sharp decline in irregular migration between the U.S. and Cuba, as well as a significant increase in mutually beneficial collaboration efforts between the Cuban and the U.S. Coast Guards.
Paradoxically, added the Cuban website, the Trump Administration has virtually frozen consular services as provided by its embassy in Havana, thus hampering normal travel and visa procedures between the two nations. / RHC