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"Isolation has not worked": Obama says U.S. ending outdated approach to Cuba

President announces historic shift in Cuba policy


Matthew LeeJulie Pace
December 17, 2014 10:25PM (UTC)

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama declared the end of America's "outdated approach" to Cuba Wednesday, announcing the re-establishment of diplomatic relations as well as economic and travel ties with the communist island - a historic shift in U.S. policy that aims to bring an end to a half-century of Cold War enmity.

"Isolation has not worked," Obama said in remarks from the White House. "It's time for a new approach."

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As Obama spoke, Cuban President Raul Castro was addressing his own nation from Havana. Obama and Castro spoke by phone for more than 45 minutes Tuesday, the first substantive presidential-level discussion between the U.S. and Cuba since 1961.

Wednesday's announcement followed more than a year of secret talks between the U.S. and Cuba. The re-establishment of diplomatic ties was accompanied by Cuba's release of American Alan Gross and the swap of a U.S. spy held in Cuba for three Cubans jailed in Florida.


Matthew Lee

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Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Alan Gross Barack Obama Cuba Diplomacy Foreign Policy Raul Castro

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