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Mexico rejects lifting of ban on U.S. lawsuits against firms in Cuba

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MEXICOCITY (Reuters) – Mexico’s government on Wednesday rejected a U.S. decision that allows U.S. citizens to file lawsuits against foreign companies using property seized in Cuba after 1959, and said it would protect any affected Mexican firms.

Effective May 2, the Trump administration lifted a longstanding ban against American citizens lodging lawsuits against foreign businesses that use properties taken by Cuba’s Communist government since Fidel Castro’s 1959 revolution.

“Mexico is analysing the relevant legal instances to file actions for breaches of international law that the Helms-Burton Act represents, as well as to protect Mexican interests abroad,” the Mexican government said in a statement.

Title III of the Helms-Burton Act had been fully waived by every U.S. president over the past 23 years due to opposition from the international community and fears it could create chaos in the U.S. court system with a flood of lawsuits.

The Trump administration last month announced it would lift the ban in a policy shift intended to increase pressure on Havana at a time Washington is demanding an end to Cuban support for Venezuela president Nicolas Maduro.

(Reporting by Delphine Schrank; Editing by Dave Graham and Bill Berkrot)

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