Cuban Democracy Act

The Cuban Democracy Act was a bill presented by U.S. Congressman Robert Torricelli and passed in 1992 during Cuba's Special Period of economic depression which prohibited foreign-based subsidiaries of U.S. companies from trading with Cuba, travel to Cuba by U.S. citizens, and family remittances to Cuba. The act was passed as “A bill to promote a peaceful transition to democracy in Cuba through the application of sanctions directed at the Castro government and support for the Cuban people.” The act stated that “[t]he government of Fidel Castro has demonstrated consistent disregard for internationally accepted standards of human rights and for democratic values” adding “[t]here is no sign that the Castro regime is prepared to make any significant concessions to democracy or to undertake any form of democratic opening.”[1] Congressman Torricelli stated that the act was intended to "wreak havoc on that island."[2]

Cuban Democracy Act
Great Seal of the United States
Other short titles
  • Armament Retooling and Manufacturing Support Act of 1992
  • Army National Guard Combat Readiness Reform Act of 1992
  • Cuban Democracy Act of 1992
  • Defense Conversion, Reinvestment, and Transition Assistance Act of 1992
  • Former Soviet Union Demilitarization Act of 1992
  • Iran-Iraq Arms Non-Proliferation Act of 1992
  • Military Construction Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1993
  • Panama Canal Commission Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1993
  • Service Members Occupational Conversion and Training Act of 1992
  • Weapons of Mass Destruction Control Act of 1992
Long titleAn Act to authorize appropriations for fiscal year 1993 for military activities of the Department of Defense, for military construction, and for defense activities of the Department of Energy, to prescribe personnel strengths for fiscal year for the Armed Forces, to provide for defense conversion, and for other purposes.
NicknamesNational Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1993
Enacted bythe 102nd United States Congress
EffectiveOctober 23, 1992
Public law102-484
Statutes at Large106 Stat. 2315 aka 106 Stat. 2575
Titles amended22 U.S.C.: Foreign Relations and Intercourse
U.S.C. sections created22 U.S.C. ch. 69 § 6001 et seq.
Legislative history

Key Points of the ActEdit

Findings The Cuban regime under Fidel Castro violates the standard and internationally accepted freedom of speech, assembly, and press.
The military dominated country provides financial aid to narcotic traffickers at the expense of its own people.
The fall of the Soviet Union has led to food and oil shortages showing the Communist system as a failure.
Castro shows no signs of reforming the political system in a democratic direction as any political opposition is silenced through exile and imprisonment.

U.S. Policy Towards Cuba

The U.S. desires to see a transition towards democracy following the passing of Fidel Castro so that economic growth can occur in a manner that is helpful for the Cuban people.
To make sure that no military or technical aid comes from countries from the former Soviet Union
To be prepared to reduce sanctions in Cuba in order to help create positive change that would help the country's citizens

Regarding International Trade with Cuba

All countries trading with Cuba should discontinue doing so as well as cancel any economic activity with the country
Any country trading with Cuba risks not being eligible for aid from the U.S.

Supporting the Cuban People

The donation of food will not be restricted to individuals or organizations not associated with the government
Medical supplies and medicine will also be freely traded as long as the intention of the supplies is to help the Cuban people

Sanctions Imposed

Any vessel which has traded goods or services with Cuba cannot within 180 days dock at a U.S. port
Currency traded from the U.S. to Cuba will be limited in order to prevent the Cuban government from obtaining access to U.S. currency

Conditions for Restriction Cancellation

Once a democratic election is held under the watchful eye of the international community sanctions may be canceled
Opposition parties must be given a chance to organize and prepare for elections prior to the voting
Cuba must make the effort to move towards a free market economy

U.S. support following changes

The U.S. promises to allow international financial companies admittance into the country
Financial aid will be provided as the country changes to a more accepted economic system[3]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Cuban Democracy Act ("CDA")" (PDF). United States Code - Title 22: Foreign Relations and Intercourse. Archived from the original (PDF) on November 8, 2004.
  2. ^ Franklin, Jane (August 30, 1994). "The politics behind Clinton's Cuba policy". The Baltimore Sun.
  3. ^ "Cuban Democracy Act, 1992". U.S. Department of State.

External linksEdit