President Obama formally announced today that the U.S. has agreed to re-establish diplomatic relations with the Republic of Cuba and to reopen embassies in the respective countries later this summer. Also today, Cuban President Raúl Castro Ruz confirmed by letter to President Obama Cuba’s agreement to re-establish diplomatic relations with the U.S. The letter indicates that the embassies will open on July 20, 2015. Mr. Obama said that this was “a historic step forward in our efforts to normalize relations with the Cuban government and people, and begin a new chapter with our neighbors in the Americas.”
Since December 2014, the Obama administration has taken steps, through the amendment of existing regulations, to allow for greater people-to-people travel and commercial ties between the U.S. and Cuba. Although the U.S. embargo against Cuba remains in place, the revised regulations, published in January 2015, signal the most significant change in U.S.-Cuba relations in over half a century. President Obama, in today’s statement, further called on the U.S. Congress “to lift the embargo that prevents Americans from travelling or doing business in Cuba.”
The McConnell Valdés Cuba Practice Team continues to assist clients by providing guidance with respect to the revised regulations and applicable laws regarding the U.S embargo against Cuba.
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