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All across the international scene, governments and corporations are reacting to the devastating blow dealt to America’s poker populace.

At the epicenter of the conflict are the island nations of Barbuda and Antigua. As members of the World Trade Organization, they are falling back on a previously upheld ruling which prevented the United States from classifying offshore gaming providers as criminals.

Harold Lovell, Barbuda and Antigua’s Minister for Finance and Economy, issued a strong statement in regard to the sudden cutting of business ties:

“I am concerned that at this point in time United States authorities continue to prosecute non-domestic suppliers of remote gaming services in clear contravention of international law.

“I am not aware of any other situation where a member of the WTO has subjected persons to criminal prosecution under circumstances where the WTO has expressly ruled that to do so is in breach of an international treaty.

“At this time we are examining all of the options we have against the United States as a result of the WTO decision. We are confident that the WTO rulings have significant strength and we are now looking into ways to capitalise on that in order to achieve our objectives.”

The Kahnawake Gaming Commision (KGC), who owns the primary license for Absolute Poker, expressed similar sentiments. An internal review is being conducted to determine whether or not players will be able to get their hands on their frozen accounts.

“The KGC’s principal concern,” said a company release, “is that players are not adversely affected by the actions taken by US authorities. The KGC is presently engaged in discussions with its licensee concerning the status of player accounts.

“Upon completion of its review, the KGC will determine what steps may be required and will issue a further statement at that time.”

The Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission, under which PokerStars operates thanks to a license from the Crown Dependency, is also seeking to protect users’ funds. The company states that, despite the actions of the US government, the world’s largest poker site is in no danger of losing its license.

“We are aware that PokerStars have suspended the availability of cash-play games in the USA and we are currently endeavouring to ensure that any player who wishes to withdraw money from their account can do so.”