The U.S. State Department placed additional sanctions on Cuba on June 3, blacklisting seven Cuban companies including the financial institution that handles U.S. remittances to the communist nation.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced the seven Cuban military-controlled companies were added to the Cuba Restricted List, barring U.S. citizens and residents from doing business with them.
“These seven sub-entities disproportionately benefit the Castro dictatorship, a regime which uses the profits from these businesses to oppress the Cuban people and to fund its interference in Venezuela,” Secretary Pompeo said in a statement.
Pompeo explained that among the seven companies are a military-controlled financial institution, three military-owned hotels, two military-owned scuba diving centers, and one military-owned marine park for tourists.
The bulk of Cuba’s tourism industry is owned and operated by the Cuban military, the statement noted.
“In particular, the addition of financial institution FINCIMEX to the Cuba Restricted List will help address the regime’s attempts to control the flow of hard currency that belongs to the Cuban people,” Pompeo added, referring to the company that handles U.S. remittances.
“We will continue to stop the flow of money into the pockets of those who oppress the Cuban people,” Pompeo later said in a tweet.
The additional sanctions follow the U.S. State Department’s announcement on May 13 that Cuba was placed back on the list of countries that do not cooperate fully with the United States’ efforts to counter terrorism.
That announcement marked the first time the communist nation had been reinstated on the list since the 2015 U.S. counterterrorism report. It now joins the ranks of Iran, North Korea, Syria, and Venezuela.