Illustration: cubadebate.cu
Illustration: cubadebate.cu

HAVANA TIMES — The United States and Cuba will resume on Thursday in Havana the migration talks initiated almost half a year ago in Washington, confirmed sources of the US Interests Section in Havana on Tuesday.

The US delegation said it will appear before the press on Friday to give details of the talks, noted dpa news.

The US severed diplomatic ties with Cuba more than half a century ago and maintains a commercial and economic embargo on the island.  It also forbids its citizens to visit Cuba without special Treasury Department permission. (Cuban-Americans are now exempt from the travel ban).

The current meetings on migration issues resumed in July 2013 in Washington. The last round took place two years earlier.

The talks will focus on immigration issues. The Obama administration has said on several occasions that this form of dialogue does not represent a change in US policy toward Cuba.

Obama in 2009 resumed migration talks held for the first time in 1995.  They had been suspended for six years starting 2003 during the George W. Bush administration.

The case of US agent Alan Gross, arrested in Cuba in December 2009 and later sentenced to prison on the island for crimes against state security, caused a pause in discussions until January 2011.

Cuba hopes to achieve with the United States a new immigration agreement. The last one was signed in 1994 following the “rafters crisis” when thousands of Cubans reached US shores in a weeks long mass exodus.

Since then, Washington agreed to grant 20,000 visas per year to Cubans to facilitate an orderly exit from the island, while Havana agreed to accept those who are returned by the US authorities without imposing reprisals.

With more than 1.5 million residents of Cuban origin based mainly in Florida, the United States is the country where most of the island’s exiles have settled.


4 thoughts on “Cuba-US Resume Migration Talks

  • Hmmmm….no arguments against what I posted.
    Thanks for letting the truth stand unmolested.

  • As I understand it, it involves about US$500.00, an eighteen month wait and a 50% possibility of rejection when a Cuban applies at the U.S. Interests Section for legal immigration.
    OR
    Any Cuban ( and Cubans only) can risk their lives in anything that they think will float across the Florida Straits to dry U.S. soil and be granted immediate admission upon landing .
    Were the U.S concerned about the fate and lives of Cubans whom they claim live in a communist hell-hole, they’d accept any and all and airlift them to the U.S.
    The policy is an open effort to disparage the Cuban revolution .
    As I understand the history, some 50,000 Cubans a year came to the U.S BEFORE the revolution and now with that horrible communist regime torturing and jailing all dissidents, the great humanitarians in the GOUSA have agreed to take only 20,000 a year legally but an unlimited number if they do it both illegally and as an embarrassment to the Cuban revolution.
    I am open to correction on my numbers but not on the content and aim of the U.S propaganda element and strategy involved. .

  • “…while Havana agreed to accept those who are returned by the US
    authorities without imposing reprisals.”

    So all those baseball players and other Cuban nationals that were thrown in
    jail for attempting to escape dont count? That is false advertising!

    while
    Havana agreed to accept those who are returned by the US authorities
    without imposing reprisals. – See more at:
    http://www.havanatimes.org/?p=101080#sthash.Iy9UFCOB.dpuf

  • Migration talks? Why? The US has the leverage here. There is nothing we need from Cuba. On the other hand, the Castros will likely continue to ask for an end to the wet foot/dry foot policy. Oh well, at least we are talking….

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