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Raul Castro

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  • Return visit to Communist Cuba finds new hope amid change Wednesday, 18 Feb 2015 | 12:05 AM ET

    As a former longtime Cuba correspondent returning after nearly six years, I thought I knew what would come next: a search of my luggage by stoned-faced military men, a scolding, maybe even a fine. It was the first sign of the more relaxed and hopeful atmosphere I found during a brief visit back to Havana this month, a feeling that didn't exist during my 1999-2009...

  • Pelosi leads House Democrats visiting Cuba Tuesday, 17 Feb 2015 | 11:25 AM ET

    WASHINGTON— House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi led a delegation of Democrats from her chamber on a visit to Cuba on Tuesday that her office said was aimed at further improving U.S. relations with the island nation. "This delegation will work to advance the U.S.- Cuba relationship and build on the work done by many in the Congress over the years, especially with...

  • However, the U.S. State Department said many goods were excluded from the liberalization, including tobacco, vegetables and some textiles, and it was unclear whether Cuba would relax its own rules to permit Cubans to export to the United States. The move is the latest step toward normalization after the United States and Cuba agreed on Dec. 17 to begin the process...

  • The United States created an exception to its trade embargo of Cuba in 2000 to allow food and medicine sales, but it still denies Cuba credit, forcing it to pay cash up front. Although the United States and Cuba are seeking to restore diplomatic relations after more than five decades of confrontation, the embargo on Cuba remains largely in place.

  • WASHINGTON, Feb 5- The United States is pressing Cuba to allow the opening of its embassy in Havana by April, U.S. officials told Reuters, despite the Communist island's demand that it first be removed from the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism. A refusal by Cuba to allow the United States to quickly establish an official embassy for the first time in half a...

  • WASHINGTON, Feb 4- The U.S. State Department official leading negotiations with the Cuban government said on Wednesday the United States is not considering returning the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay to Havana as it discusses improved ties. "The issue of Guantanamo is not on the table in these conversations," Roberta Jacobson, the assistant secretary of State...

  • WASHINGTON, Feb 2- U.S. lawmakers are preparing a series of bills to ease U.S. restrictions on trade with Cuba, with plans to introduce them in the Senate in the next two months, senior congressional aides said on Monday. One piece of legislation being drafted would allow U.S. telecommunications companies to do business in Cuba and another would specifically...

  • HAVANA, Jan 23- A senior U.S. diplomat in Cuba for negotiations with Havana on restoring long-frozen diplomatic relations met a group of dissidents on Friday, seeking to underline Washington's concern over human rights but irritating the island's communist government. But Havana has stressed that efforts to normalize ties should not be accompanied by...

  • Assistant Secretary of State Roberta Jacobson met some of Cuba's dissidents on Friday to emphasize the importance the United States places on human right in talks with Cuba on restoring diplomatic ties. The meeting ruffled Cuba, which has stressed that efforts to normalize ties should not be accompanied by meddling in its internal affairs.

  • HAVANA, Jan 22- The United States said it pressed Cuba to improve human rights during historic, high-level talks on Thursday, annoying the Cubans after both sides reported making progress toward restoring diplomatic relations. Obama needs the Republican-controlled Congress to completely normalize relations with Cuba, and Republicans such as Florida...

  • HAVANA, Jan 22- The United States and Cuba moved closer to restoring diplomatic relations on Thursday with historic, high-level talks, but the Americans noted the two sides must overcome more than 50 years of mistrust to normalize trade and travel. Assistant Secretary of State Roberta Jacobson, who led the American delegation, said re-establishing diplomatic...

  • HAVANA, Jan 22- The United States and Cuba moved closer to restoring diplomatic relations on Thursday with historic, high-level talks, but the Americans noted the two sides must overcome more than 50 years of mistrust to normalize trade and travel. President Barack Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro announced on Dec. 17 they would work to restore diplomatic...

  • HAVANA, Jan 22- The United States and Cuba began historic discussions on restoring diplomatic relations on Thursday, aiming to reach agreement on the opening of embassies in each other's countries. Senior U.S. officials say they hope Cuba will agree to reopen embassies and appoint ambassadors in each other's capitals in coming months. The United States also...

  • HAVANA, Jan 22- The United States and Cuba launch talks on Thursday on restoring diplomatic relations after a contentious session on immigration accentuated the difficulties in overcoming half a century of hostilities. Senior U.S. officials say they hope Cuba will agree to reopen embassies and appoint ambassadors in each other's capitals in coming months.

  • HAVANA, Jan 21- The United States and Cuba clashed over immigration policy on Wednesday at the first session of high-level talks seeking to restore diplomatic ties between the Cold War adversaries. President Barack Obama and his Cuban counterpart Raul Castro announced on Dec. 17 they had reached a historic breakthrough after 18 months of secret negotiations.

  • HAVANA, Jan 21- The highest-level U.S. delegation to Cuba in 35 years began talks on Wednesday aimed at restoring diplomatic relations and eventually opening up full trade and travel ties between two adversaries locked in Cold War-era hostilities. He also urged Congress to start work on ending the embargo but critics at home say Obama first needs to win...

  • Jan 17- New York Governor Andrew Cuomo will lead one of the first trade missions to Cuba from the United States since the Obama administration loosened travel and trade restrictions on the Communist-ruled Caribbean island, his office confirmed on Saturday. The announcement came as Vermont Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy set off on the first congressional...

  • WASHINGTON, Jan 15- The United States rolled out a sweeping set of measures on Thursday to significantly ease sanctions on Cuba, opening up the country to expanded U.S. travel, trade and financial activities. The 54- year-old U.S. embargo on Cuba will remain in place- only Congress can lift it. Congressional critics of Obama's shift say that Washington should not be...

  • UPDATE 2-U.S. rolls out new Cuba rules on trade, travel Thursday, 15 Jan 2015 | 10:42 AM ET

    WASHINGTON, Jan 15- The United States rolled out a sweeping set of measures on Thursday to significantly ease the half-century-old embargo against Cuba, opening up the country to expanded travel, trade and financial activities. The Treasury and Commerce Departments issued a package of new rules that will allow U.S. exports of telecommunications,...

  • UPDATE 1-U.S. takes first steps to ease Cuba embargo Thursday, 15 Jan 2015 | 9:34 AM ET

    WASHINGTON, Jan 15- The United States rolled out a sweeping set of measures on Thursday to ease the half-century-old embargo against Cuba, opening up the country to expanded travel, trade and financial activities. The Treasury and Commerce Departments issued a package of new rules that will allow U.S. exports of telecommunications, agricultural and...