One year ago, President Trump allowed Americans with claims to property confiscated by the Cuban government to sue any entity that “traffics” in that property. But a recent decision by a Florida district court has pruned the list of potential plaintiffs substantially.
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The State Department's decision to add Cuba to the Not Fully Cooperating Country list could signal a more aggressive policy.
One year ago, the Trump administration announced that, for the first time in 23 years, the President would cease to suspend Title III of the Helms-Burton Act and would instead allow U.S. nationals to sue persons and companies that “traffic” in property expropriated by the Cuban government after the start of the Cuban Revolution. Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama had suspended Title III from 1996-2017, because they concluded that activation of the provision would produce a flood of complex lawsuits in U.S. courts and cause diplomatic friction with close allies.
Yesterday, as on of his last official acts relating to immigration policy, President Obama announced the termination of the "Wet Foot/Dry Foot" policy for Cubans.
Recently I returned from a trip to Cuba, where I had the opportunity to interview Celeste Pino Canales, a highly regarded professor of public international law at the University of Havana. I pursued the interview for a couple of reasons. First, I wanted to get a sense for what it’s like to be an international law professor in Cuba. Second, given renewed interest in the field of comparative international law, I wanted to investigate whether there might be distinctive Cuban perspectives on topics such as treaty law and custom.