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Sep 12, 2015

U.S., Cuba set agenda on improving relations

HAVANA (Reuters) – Cuba and the United States on Friday set an agenda for improving relations, putting a priority on more easily attainable agreements while leaving aside difficult issues such as the U.S. trade embargo and naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba said.

Officials from both countries met in Havana for the first time since the two former Cold War enemies re-established diplomatic relations in July following a 54-year break and reopened embassies in each other’s capitals in July and August.

Sep 11, 2015

Cuba to free 3,522 prisoners ahead of pope’s visit

HAVANA (Reuters) – Cuba said on Friday it would pardon and release 3,522 prisoners on the occasion of the Sept. 19-22 visit by Pope Francis, repeating similar actions it took ahead of two previous papal visits.

There was no immediate indication whether those to be pardoned included people considered political prisoners by dissidents or human rights organizations.

Sep 10, 2015

EU, Cuba enter difficult phase of bilateral talks, focus on political pact

HAVANA (Reuters) – The European Union and Cuba entered the most difficult phase of their bilateral talks on Thursday when they started to discuss a new political agreement to replace a unilateral policy imposed by the Europeans 19 years ago.

The two sides have met five times over the past year-and-a-half in search of a far-reaching accord. Both sides reported on Thursday that two of the three pillars of a deal, on trade and cooperation, were basically finished, and they started talking about a political agreement between the 28-nation bloc and the communist-run Caribbean island.

Sep 10, 2015

Cuba’s controversial cardinal takes center stage with pope’s visit

HAVANA (Reuters) – Cardinal Jaime Ortega rose from labor camp inmate in the 1960s to become one of Cuba’s leading political figures, leveraging a non-confrontational style into a rare position of influence for someone outside the Communist Party.

With Pope Francis visiting Cuba next week, Ortega’s role in boosting the power of the Roman Catholic Church on the island has drawn both praise and scorn.

Aug 16, 2015

Cuba’s top diplomat for U.S. sees long road to normal ties

HAVANA (Reuters) – Josefina Vidal receives a check from the United States for $4,085 once a year, rent money for the U.S. naval base at Cuba’s Guantanamo Bay.

But Cuba’s government refuses to cash the checks, made out to a non-existent Treasurer, because it sees the U.S. occupation of Guantanamo as illegal.

Aug 15, 2015

Kerry urges “genuine democracy” in Cuba as U.S. raises its flag

HAVANA, Aug 14 (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State John
Kerry called for political change in Cuba on Friday, telling
Cubans they should be free to choose their own leaders, as he
watched the U.S. flag fly at the American embassy in Havana for
the first time in 54 years.

Leading a ceremony to mark the restoration of diplomatic
relations between the Cold War adversaries, Kerry declared a new
era in U.S.-Cuban relations but pressed the Communist government
on democracy and human rights.

Aug 15, 2015

Kerry urges ‘genuine democracy’ at U.S. flag ceremony in Cuba

HAVANA (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry declared a new era in relations as he celebrated restored diplomatic ties in Havana on Friday, but he also urged political change in Cuba, telling Cubans they should be free to choose their own leaders.

The first U.S. secretary of state to visit the Caribbean island in 70 years, Kerry presided over a ceremony to raise the U.S. flag over the newly reopened American embassy.

Aug 14, 2015

In symbol of restored ties, Kerry to raise U.S. flag at Havana embassy

HAVANA (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Cuba on Friday to raise the U.S. flag at the recently restored American Embassy in Havana, another symbolic step in improved relations between the two Cold War-era foes.

The ceremony, raising the flag over the building for the first time in 54 years, will come nearly four weeks after the United States and Cuba formally renewed diplomatic relations and upgraded their diplomatic missions to embassies.

Aug 14, 2015

In another symbol of thawing ties, Kerry to raise U.S. flag at restored Havana embassy

HAVANA (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry travels to Cuba on Friday to raise the U.S. flag at the recently restored American embassy in Havana, another symbolic step in the thawing of relations between the two Cold War-era foes.

The ceremony, raising the flag over the building for the first time in 54 years, comes nearly four weeks after the United States and Cuba formally renewed diplomatic relations and upgraded their diplomatic missions to embassies.

Aug 13, 2015

Decades of skullduggery on both sides at U.S. embassy in Cuba

HAVANA (Reuters) – The seven-story building on Havana’s famed “Malecon” seafront has for decades been a flashpoint in the Cold War’s most enduring rivalry.

Spy games and dirty tricks have been directed by and against the U.S. officials working inside the beige structure, which is nondescript architecturally but among the most famous in Havana.

    • About Daniel

      "Daniel Trotta joined Reuters as a correspondent in 1993, starting in Nicaragua and moving Mexico City (1996) and Madrid (2000) before coming to New York in 2005. As a U.S. General News correspondent, his specialty is writing the lead story on major breaking news. Trotta also travels the United States producing in-depth features and helps edit the national news file from the Reuters headquarters in New York. Outside the office, he is the manager of the New York Express of the New York City Metro Baseball League."
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