WASHINGTON – White House spokesman Sean Spicer said on Friday that the Trump government is making human rights a priority in the “full review” it is making of US policies toward Cuba.
Spicer said that President Donald Trump “is committed to an agenda of ensuring human rights for all citizens throughout the world. And as we review those policies in Cuba, that will be forefront in their policy discussions.”
The spokesman gave no further details in that regard because, he said, “there’s nothing that we have on that front at this point.”
Spicer was answering a reporter at his press conference who asked if there have been any contacts with the Cuban government since Trump took office and whether the United States plans to revise its policy toward the island.
The first question got no answer and with regard to the second, Spicer would only say that “we are in the midst of a full review of all US policies towards Cuba.”
That was the first statement of the new government about Cuba since Trump was sworn-in as president last Jan. 20.
On Jan. 11, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said during his Senate confirmation hearing that Trump would make a top-to-bottom review of bilateral relations with Cuba, including Barack Obama’s decision to take Cuba off the list of countries identified as sponsors of terrorism.
And as president-elect on Nov. 28, Trump said he would scrap Obama’s measures toward Cuba if the island’s government refused to negotiate a “better deal” with him.
A few days before, in his reaction to the death of Fidel Castro, Trump described the Cuban leader as a “brutal dictator” and promised that his government “will do all it can to ensure the Cuban people can finally begin their journey toward prosperity and liberty.”