Marriott says Trump administration ordered it to cease Cuba hotel business

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Getty ImagesThe Trump administration has ordered Marriott International to wind down hotel operations in Communist-run Cuba, a company spokeswoman told Reuters, extinguishing what had been a symbol of the U.S.-Cuban detente.Starwood Hotels, now owned by Marriott, four years ago became the first U.S. hotel company to sign a deal with Cuba since the 1959 revolution in the mark of the normalization of relations pursued by former President Barack Obama.But the administration of President Donald Trump has unraveled that detente, saying it wants to pressure Cuba into democratic reform and to stop supporting Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.The move could help Trump bolster support in the large Cuban-American community in Florida, a state considered vital to his re-election chances in November.”We have recently received notice that the government-issued license will not be renewed, forcing Marriott to cease operations in Cuba,” a company spokeswoman told Reuters.The spokeswoman said the U.S. Treasury Department had ordered the company to wind down its operation of the Four Points Sheraton in Havana by Aug. 31. It would also not be allowed to open other hotels it had been preparing to run.The U.S. Treasury Department and State Department did …

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