SANTA CLARA, Oct. 9, 2017 (Xinhua) -- Cuban First Vice President Miguel Diaz-Canel delivers a speech during an event commemorating the 50th anniversary of the death of Latin American revolutionary Ernesto "Che" Guevara, in Santa Clara, Cuba, on Oct. . Image Source: IANS News

Havana, Jan 12 : Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel strongly rejected the US extension of ban on charter flights between the United States and Cuban destinations except Havana.

"Cuba rejects new ban on charter flights imposed by the United States. The escalation of sanctions violates the human rights of Cubans and of Americans," the president tweeted on Saturday, Xinhua news agency reported.

On Friday, the US government announced the suspension of all public charter flights to Cuba, except those to Havana's Jose Marti International Airport.

This new sanction, which affects nine airports on the island, is an extension of last year's ban on US commercial flights to all Cuban destinations except Havana.

Public charter flight operators will have a 60-day wind-down period to discontinue all affected flights, according to the US statement.

The prohibition on charter flights adds to a set of sanctions implemented by Washington against Havana since US President Donald Trump took office, seeking to stifle the island's economy, especially the tourism sector.

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