Tuesday, February 28, 2006

U.S.-owned hotel in Mexico gets closed notice

U.S.-owned hotel in Mexico gets 'closed' notice

MEXICO CITY, Mexico (AP) -- City officials on Tuesday posted "closed"
notices on a U.S.-owned hotel in Mexico City that drew fire from the
government after it kicked out a Cuban delegation under pressure from

Officials from the city borough where the Hotel Sheraton Maria Isabel is
located posted signs across its front entrance saying "due to
infringement of local law, the Sheraton Hotel activities have been
suspended. We are sorry for the inconvenience that this has caused.
Thank you for your understanding."

It was not immediately clear if the closure would affect the entire hotel.

Local officials said they were investigating the hotel -- located near
the U.S. Embassy -- after its manager asked a delegation of Cuban
officials attending a private-sector oil summit with U.S. executives to
leave February 2.

Officials at the U.S. Treasury Department later said if the hotel had
not expelled the Cubans, it would have been in violation of a
long-standing embargo against the communist island.

The act outraged many Mexicans who saw it as an attempt to force a
foreign law on Mexican soil.

City officials cited the hotel for alleged licensing violations, while
federal officials filed separate complaints charging the company had
violated Mexican trade and investment laws.

Copyright 2006 The Associated Press.

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