Trump will not bring back ‘wet foot, dry foot’ Cuba policy

Trump will not bring back ‘wet foot, dry foot’ Cuba policy
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President Trump will not bring back the so-called “wet foot, dry foot” policy toward Cuban migrants, according to senior White House officials.

The policy -- eliminated by President Obama in the last days of his administration -- was one of many aspects of U.S. policy toward Cuba under review by the Trump administration.

Designed to address refugees fleeing the island for Florida, the policy returned to Cuba migrants who were intercepted at sea but allowed those who reached land to stay in the U.S.

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On Friday in Miami, Trump will announce his administration’s changes to U.S. policy on Cuba, including rolling back some of the changes Obama made during his second term in favor of increased restrictions on travel and business transactions. Among changes the White House will unveil Friday, White House officials said, are plans to eliminate the “people to people” category of allowed travel to the island and restrict financial transactions with companies significantly controlled by the Cuban military.

He will also impose new expectations for President Raul Castro, or his successor, to meet as part of future negotiations, among them free and fair elections, the release of political prisoners and direct pay to Cuban workers.

“The new policy under the Trump administration will empower the Cuban people,” a senior White House official told reporters at a Thursday briefing.