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Venezuela, China censure latest US sanctions on Cuba

Venezuela and China have censured the United States’ latest anti-Cuba sanctions as illegal coercive measures and an excuse for foreign interference in the small island country.

“From Venezuela, we reject the new and always illegal unilateral measures by the agonizing US government against the brotherly people of Cuba,” Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza wrote in a Twitter post on Tuesday.

“In the past four years, not even the most eager [US] hawks could cope with the dignity and fighting capacity of the Cuban people. They failed,” Arreaza added.

China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin also slammed the US sanctions on Monday, accusing Washington of politicizing human rights issues to promote its policy of pressure and meddling in Cuba’s internal affairs.

Wenbin further highlighted Beijing’s position that Washington must respect Cuban sovereignty and independence, and also eliminate the economic, financial, and commercial blockade that it has unilaterally imposed on the Caribbean nation for more than 60 years.

The development came after the administration of lame-duck US President Donald Trump on Monday blacklisted three Cuban companies — Grupo de Administracion Empresarial S.A., Financiera Cimex S.A., and Kave Coffee, S.A. — alleging that they were managed by the Cuban military.

Reacting to the new US bans, Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriquez posted a Twitter message on Monday to protest the anti-Havana measures, which were first announced by hawkish US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo less than a month before his term ends.

“Cuba will get ahead no matter how many companies they include in their spurious lists,” Rodriquez wrote. “Every action by the US foreign policy reinforces the isolation and international discredit to which Trump and his team led it.”

Also on Monday, the US Treasury Department imposed sanctions against three senior Nicaraguan officials over supporting the Central American country’s President Daniel Ortega, who had led the country’s 1979 revolution against US-backed dictator Anastasio Samoza.

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