Monday, 21 March 2016

Obama becomes the first president to visit Cuba in 88 years (photos)

Obama arrived at Havana's Jose Marti International Airport in Air Force One, the presidential jet with "United States of America" emblazoned across its fuselage, a sight almost unimaginable not long ago on the island, just 90 miles (145 km) off the coast of Florida.

He arrived to small but cheering crowds on Sunday at the start of a historic visit to Cuba that opened a new chapter in U.S. engagement with the island's Communist government after decades of hostility between the former Cold War foes.

He was met by Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez, the top Cuban official present. The formal welcoming ceremony will be on Monday when Obama meets the Cuban president at the presidential palace.

U.S. officials appeared unfazed by Castro’s absence from the airport welcome, even though he personally met and greeted Pope Francis in September. Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump tweeted that Obama’s visit was a “big deal” but that he got “no respect.”

Obama will hold talks with Castro – but not his brother Fidel, the revolutionary leader - and speak to entrepreneurs on Monday. He meets privately with dissidents, addresses Cubans live on state-run media and attends an exhibition baseball game on Tuesday.

The trip carries both symbolism and substance after decades of hostility between Washington and Havana.

Traveling with first lady Michelle Obama, her mother and their daughters, Sasha and Malia, Obama took in the sights of the colonial-era neighborhood and was given a tour of Havana's 18th century cathedral by Cardinal Jaime Ortega, who played a role in secret talks that led to the rapprochement 15 months ago.

The Obamas dined at the San Cristobal restaurant, run by an Afro-Cuban as part of a cautious opening to private enterprise since Fidel Castro handed power to his brother in 2008.  

source: Reuters


  1. Well Cuba has been an American longtime public enemy number one since it was discovered that in 1960 Cuba had erected Russian missiles launcher from Cuba in direction to America which lead to the cold war.

    Since no one want to see their enemy prosper, America has been actively spying on Cuba trying to destroy their military and their economy in silent. I can tell you all these because it is no longer a secret today. One way of destruction is that Cuba should benefit from any visit or economical exchange from American. And that embargo from America has affected Cuba and damage their progress in economy and many other ways. Even now American citizen are NOT allow to visit Cuba. Those who go there need a special approval after investigation from the State Department. This means that to go to Cuba, an American citizen need to disclose in detail the purpose of his visit there.

    US military member are simply not allow there unless on military order mission most likely at Guantanamo Bay. Period. The State Department cannot approve a visa for any US military member to visit Cuba as for vacation.

    The US government can tract the move of all Americans in the world from their US Passport since none can snick and board a plane and enter another country without passport that is scanned and reported in international software system of all airport in the world. Therefore any unauthorized visit to Cuba will simply result in an arrest and prosecution upon returning on American soil. Welcome to America! :)

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