Back in December, Antigua won the right to suspend concessions and other obligations against the U.S. in the amount of US$21 million in relation to U.S. restrictions on online gambling. So far, though, Antigua has not taken any action to put the suspension into effect. Antigua's lawyer is now hinting that they are about to start:
The government of Antigua is likely to abrogate intellectual property treaties with the U.S. by the end of March and authorize wholesale copying of American movies, music and other "soft targets" if the Bush administration fails to respond to proposals for settling a trade dispute between the two counties, according to the lawyer representing the Caribbean island nation.
Mendel acknowledged his client would like such entities as the MPAA, the recording industry and Microsoft -- orgs that depend on IP protection -- to pressure the Bush administration into negotiating a "preferred" settlement, which would allow Internet gambling between Antigua and the U.S.
But he insisted the threat was neither idle nor empty. "Perhaps the U.S. doesn't think we're serious," Mendel said. "We are."