Cuba open to more direct talks with the U.S.: ClintonJune 1st, 2009 - 3:13 pm ICT by ANI
San Salvador, June 1 (ANI): Cuba has notified the Obama administration that it is ready to resume talks on migration issues and to negotiate direct postal service between the countries for the first time in decades.
It also agreed to cooperate with the United States on counterterrorism, drug interdiction and hurricane relief efforts.
The decisions, conveyed to the State Department on Saturday in diplomatic notes, represent another step in the gradual unlocking of relations under the Obama administration, after nearly 50 years of a trade embargo that many in the hemisphere say has outlived its usefulness, reports the New York Times.
“Greater connections can lead to a better, freer future for the Cuban people. These talks are in the interest of the United States, and they are also in the interest of the Cuban people,” said US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who is in El Salvador for the presidential inauguration on Monday of the leftist leader Mauricio Funes.
On Tuesday, Clinton plans to attend a meeting in Honduras of the Organization of American States.
Members of the group want to make an even clearer break with the past by moving to readmit Cuba, which the organization expelled in 1962, citing its alliance with the Communist bloc.
Clinton has fended off calls for Cuba to be offered membership until Havana moves to accept the group’s democratic principles.
On Sunday, she reiterated that the United States would oppose the efforts of several Latin American countries to immediately reinstate Cuba. (ANI)
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Tags: communist bloc, counterterrorism, democratic principles, diplomatic notes, drug interdiction, funes, havana, hemisphere, hillary clinton, hurricane relief efforts, latin american countries, migration issues, new york times, organization of american states, postal service, presidential inauguration, san salvador, secretary of state, state department, trade embargo