Obama to ease travel restrictions for Cuba: Report

April 14th, 2009 - 1:34 am ICT by IANS  

Barack Obama Washington, April 13 (DPA) US President Barack Obama plans to ease travel and other restrictions to Cuba, allowing Cuban Americans to return home for longer periods in a reversal of former president George W. Bush’s policies, US media reported Monday.
The new policy was due to be revealed ahead of Obama’s trip this week to a summit of North and South American leaders in Trinidad and Tobago, the Washington Post reported.

The White House would not confirm the plans.

Obama has not pushed for lifting the decades-old trade embargo against Cuba, but has signalled that he wants to improve ties with the Communist island.

The much-anticipated announcement would allow Cuba-Americans to visit relatives on the Caribbean island once a year and remain as long as they wish, as well as allowing them to send more money back home, the newspaper said.

The 2004 restrictions imposed by Bush limited visits to once every three years, for no more than two weeks, and excluded extended family, such as aunts, uncles and cousins.

Those restrictions were lifted temporarily last month by the US Congress, which cut off all funding for enforcing the travel limits until September.

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