Cuba, US to exchange ambassadors in near future: Castro

Cuba, US to exchange ambassadors in near future: Castro

HomeAmericasMore Tue May 12, 2015 6:10PM

Cuban President Raul Castro says his country and the United States will name ambassadors after Washington removes Cuba from its list of terror later this month.

“This sort of unjust accusation is about to be lifted and we’ll be able to name ambassadors,” Castro told journalists at Jose Marti International Airport in the capital, Havana, after seeing off his visiting French counterpart Francois Hollande on Tuesday.

He added that negotiations on the countries’ historic move to renew diplomatic ties were “going well,” and that the process would advance after a 45-day waiting period ends on May 29, which would give the US Congress time to take action on President Barack Obama’s decision to remove Cuba from the list of state sponsors of terror.

On April 11, the presidents of the United States and Cuba held unprecedented face-to-face talks in Panama, the first such meeting between the leaders of the two countries since 1956.

The landmark meeting, which lasted more than an hour, was held in Panama City on the sidelines of the Summit of the Americas.

Obama thanked Castro for his “spirit of openness and courtesy” during their talks, while Castro emphasized that the bilateral negotiations will require patience.

“Over time, it is possible for us to turn the page and develop a new relationship between our two countries,” the US president said.

“We are willing to discuss everything, but we need to be patient, very patient,” Castro said. “We might disagree on something today on which we could agree tomorrow.”

Obama said, “This is obviously a historic meeting,” adding that, after five decades of US policies that had not worked, “it was time for us to try something new.”

The United States broke off diplomatic relations with Cuba in 1961 and placed an official embargo against the country in 1962.

The two countries became ideological foes soon after the 1959 revolution that brought Fidel Castro to power in Cuba, and their ties remained hostile even after the end of the Cold War.

On December 17, 2014, Obama announced that the United States would start talks with Cuba to normalize diplomatic relations, marking the most significant shift in American foreign policy toward Cuba in over 50 years.

Leave a Reply