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Caribbean

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  • BAHORUCO, Dominican Republic— The men in ragged clothes, many barefoot and covered in grime, scramble deep into the earth, searching for veins of a blue-green stone believed to exist only in the southwestern mountains of the Dominican Republic. "The idea is to give some added value to the stone, and to see that value stay in this region," said Brunildo Espinosa,...

  • NEW YORK— GNC Holdings Inc. said Monday that it has reached a deal with New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman over its Herbal Plus products. In February, Schneiderman's office sent letters to GNC, Target, Walmart and Walgreens for allegedly selling store brand herbal supplement products in New York that either could not be verified to contain the labeled...

  • Nearly 90 percent of the Americans who filed claims for confiscated Cuban property were individuals, according to a Creighton University study commissioned by the U.S. Agency for International Development. "They left behind all kinds of stuff— stock, life insurance policies, artwork, cars," says Michael Kelly, a Creighton law professor who participated in the...

  • OMAHA, Neb.— The smell of Cuban coffee drifts from the kitchen as Carolyn Chester digs through photos, faded with age, that fill four boxes spread across the dining table. "I always heard about Cuba... and all this money that we lost and' Maybe one day,' but I didn't understand it." Soon after Fidel Castro won control of Cuba in 1959, his government began confiscating the...

  • Baha Mar delays opening of Bahamas megaresort Thursday, 26 Mar 2015 | 12:06 PM ET

    NASSAU, Bahamas— The opening of a roughly $3.5 billion hotel-and-casino project in the Bahamas has been delayed due to incomplete work by the lead contractor. The megaresort touted as the most expensive project ever in the Bahamas is expected to be a roughly 1,000- acre complex with hotels, some 40 restaurants and clubs, an 18- hole golf course and what's billed...

  • US telecommunications delegation in Cuba for talks Wednesday, 25 Mar 2015 | 10:09 PM ET

    HAVANA— A delegation of U.S. telecommunication officials is in Havana to meet with their Cuban counterparts as part of talks to restore full diplomatic relations between the countries. A Cuban government statement says Daniel Sepulveda, the U.S. coordinator for international communications and information policy, will leave Cuba on Thursday.

  • WASHINGTON/ MIAMI, March 23- The December breakthrough that upended a half-century of U.S.- Cuba enmity has been portrayed as the fruit of 18 months of secret diplomacy. President Barack Obama and veteran Cuba specialists to forge the historic rapprochement. In a May 2008 speech to the conservative Cuban-American National Foundation in Miami, Obama set out a...

  • Tourists flocking to Cuba 'before the Americans come' Monday, 23 Mar 2015 | 12:40 AM ET

    HAVANA— Bookings to Cuba jumped 57 percent for one New York tour operator in the weeks after Washington said it would renew ties with Havana. The boom is just one sign that the rush is on to see Cuba now— before, as many predict, McDonald's claims a spot in Old Havana and Starbucks moves in on Cubita, the island's premium coffee brand. "Cuba has a very authentic atmosphere...

  • Prison sentences for egg theft scheme in Cuba Friday, 20 Mar 2015 | 12:03 PM ET

    HAVANA— More than a dozen people were sentenced to between five and 15 years in prison for conspiring to divert millions of eggs to the black market, Cuban official media reported Friday. Eighteen suspects were convicted and one was acquitted, Communist Party newspaper Granma said, in a case where prosecutors had sought terms of up to 20 years.

  • KINGSTON, Jamaica— Jamaica has imposed import restrictions on poultry products from various spots in North America in the wake of a big outbreak of bird flu that has infected stocks. The island's agriculture ministry says fresh and frozen poultry, hatching eggs and various by-products from U.S. states including Kansas, Minnesota and Missouri are restricted...

  • MELBOURNE, March 19- London copper rose more than 1 percent on Thursday, after dropping to a one-month low in the previous session, as the dollar sagged on indications of a later start to U.S. interest rate hikes. "It's all about the U.S. dollar and it's pretty short-term," said analyst Joel Crane at Morgan Stanley in Melbourne. London Metal Exchange copper rose 1.3...

  • *Prices for new homes in China fell at record pace in Feb. LONDON, March 18- Copper hit a three-week low on Wednesday on poor prospects in top consumer China and ahead of a Federal Reserve meeting expected to lay the groundwork for an increase to U.S. interest rates. In China there was more evidence of economic weakness after prices for new homes fell at the fastest...

  • WASHINGTON, March 16- The U.S. House of Representatives is moving toward a vote in mid-May on the annual half-billion-dollar defense policy bill, U.S. Representative Mac Thornberry, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, said on Monday. Both Republicans and Democrats in Congress strongly back providing such aid to the Kiev government and members have...

  • CARACAS, March 10- President Nicolas Maduro was seeking special decree powers from Venezuela's parliament on Tuesday in response to new U.S. sanctions, drawing opposition protests of a power-grab. Opposition leaders slammed Maduro, saying he was using the worst flare-up with Washington of his nearly two-year rule to justify autocratic governance,...

  • CARACAS, March 10- President Nicolas Maduro was seeking special decree powers from Venezuela's parliament on Tuesday in response to new U.S. sanctions, drawing opposition protests of a power-grab. Opposition leaders slammed Maduro, saying he was using the worst flare-up with Washington of his nearly two-year rule to justify autocratic governance,...

  • HAVANA, March 6- The chief of the Paris Club of wealthy creditor nations met Cuban finance officials on Friday in what he believed was an unprecedented official visit to Havana to discuss the Communist-led country's debt. After previous negotiations had stalled in 2000, Cuba and the Paris Club have moved swiftly in the past year toward negotiations over a...

  • President Barack Obama said on Monday he hopes the United States will open an embassy in Cuba by the time of a Western Hemisphere summit in Panama in mid-April. In an interview with Reuters, Obama also cautioned that it will take more time to fully establish normal relations with Cuba after more than a half-century rupture. Cuba is keen to have Washington's...

  • SAN FRANCISCO, March 2- Less than three months after U.S. and Cuban officials agreed to restore diplomatic ties, Amazon.com Inc appears to be laying the groundwork to ship packages to Cuba. A "ship to Cuba" button was seen on Monday on Amazon's website by Reuters correspondents in Havana. It is unclear how quickly Amazon, the largest U.S. online retailer, could start...

  • President Barack Obama said on Monday that he hopes the United States will open an embassy in Cuba by the time of a Western Hemisphere summit in Panama in mid-April. While critics, including some members of Congress, have called the end of U.S. attempts to isolate Cuba a gift to the authoritarian Cuban government, Obama said there are already signs it is prompting...

  • MEXICO CITY, Feb 28- A Mexican meat processing firm has become the first international company to get approval for an investment project in Cuba's first special economic development area, Mexico's foreign ministry said on Saturday. News of the investment follows December's agreement between the United States and Cuba to restore diplomatic ties after more...