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April 10th, 2013
10:15 PM ET

Where is Elián González now?

Randi Kaye reports on the international custody battle over Elián González 13 years ago, and what's happened since then.

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Filed under: Cuba
April 9th, 2013
10:36 PM ET

How CNN reporter found abducted kids

CNN's Patrick Oppmann explains how he tracked down a sailboat in Cuba that an American couple used to take their two kids from Florida.

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Filed under: Crime & Punishment • Cuba
April 9th, 2013
10:23 PM ET

Family that fled to Cuba found

CNN's John Zarrella reports on two young brothers taken by their parents, who lost custody of the children, from Florida to Cuba.

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Filed under: Crime and Punishment • Cuba
April 8th, 2013
10:51 PM ET

Beyonce and Jay-Z's controversial trip

Superstar couple Beyonce and Jay-Z are drawing scrutiny for vacationing in Cuba to celebrate their fifth wedding anniversary. U.S. law prohibits citizens from traveling there for tourism.

Two conservative Cuban-American members of Congress are asking U.S. Treasury officials to look into whether the couple had the proper paperwork.

"I'm not saying that they should be politicians, but be sensitive to the cruelty of this regime, what they've done to the people of Cuba. It's just a shame to make it look like an exotic vacation, shameful," said Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.

Cuban-American Florida Senator Marco Rubio also weighed in on Twitter. In a lengthier statement, he criticized the Obama administration's updated policy that allows for visiting Cuba as part of the "people to people" program.

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Filed under: Beyonce • Cuba • Jay-Z
June 14th, 2010
10:48 AM ET

U.S., Cuba set to talk about immigration issues

Charley Keyes
CNN Senior Producer

Relations between Washington and Havana have deteriorated in recent months
Relations between Washington and Havana have deteriorated in recent months

Washington (CNN) – U.S. and Cuban officials are set to sit down together in Washington on Friday to discuss immigration and other issues, according to a State Department spokesman.

"The U.S. views the migration talks as an important opportunity for both the United States and Cuban governments to discuss policies and procedures that promote safe, legal, and orderly migration," State Department spokesman Michael Tran told CNN Sunday.

Relations between Washington and Havana have deteriorated in recent months, in part because of Cuba's detention of American contractor Alan Gross, who has been held in Cuban prison since December. The two countries have not formally held immigration talks since February and next week provides another chance for the U.S. to call for his release.

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Filed under: Cuba
July 27th, 2009
05:23 PM ET

An end to the battle of the billboards

President Raul Castro speaks to a crowd yesterday on the 56th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution. He has taken down anti-U.S. billboards.
President Raul Castro speaks to a crowd yesterday on the 56th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution. He has taken down anti-U.S. billboards.

Elise Labott
CNN State Department Producer

It was the US government's version of the ticker in New York's Times Square, blasting Havana's main seaside strip with anti-Cuba propaganda in five-foot high crimson letters. It symbolized the tit-for-tat diplomatic row between Washington and Havana.

But the ticker at the top of the US interests section in Cuba has gone blank, yet another signal the past half century of animosity between the two countries is easing

State Department Spokesman Ian Kelly said the ticker was turned off in June because it was not considered an "effective" as a means of delivering information to the Cuban people.

The scrolling electronic sign, fitted across 25 windows of the US interest section, ran quotes from American heroes like Martin Luther King's, "I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up" and Abraham Lincoln's, "No man is good enough to govern another man without that other's consent."
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Filed under: Cuba • Elise Labott
July 20th, 2009
07:07 PM ET

How many Gitmo prisoners return to fight?

Program Note: Peter Bergen will be on tonight talking about the situation in Afghanistan. Tune in AC360° 10p ET.

Peter Bergen says it's crucial to know how many ex-Guantanamo prisoners have gone back to the fight.
Peter Bergen says it's crucial to know how many ex-Guantanamo prisoners have gone back to the fight.

Peter Bergen and Katherine Tiedemann
Special to CNN

As President Obama awaits formal recommendations this month on issues surrounding the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, it is crucial that policymakers and the public have an accurate picture of the threat to the United States posed by those detainees already released.

Contrary to recent assertions that one in seven, or 14 percent, of the former prisoners had "returned to the battlefield," our analysis of Pentagon reports, news stories and other public records indicates that the number who were confirmed or suspected to be involved in anti-U.S. violence is closer to one in 25, or 4 percent.

During his first week in office, Obama signed an executive order directing that the Guantanamo prison be closed by January 22, 2010, and suspending the system of military commissions that existed to deal with detainees in what the Bush administration termed the war on terror.

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Filed under: 360° Radar • 360º Follow • Cuba • Global 360° • Guantanomo Bay • On Our Radar • Peter Bergen
June 4th, 2009
08:03 AM ET

Caving in to Cuba – or killing a Cold War relic?

Jill Dougherty
CNN Foreign Affairs Editor

Forty-seven years after Cuba was suspended from the Organization of American States, the 34-member organization has decided to revoke that decision and allow Cuba to rejoin.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who represented the United States at the meeting, called the decision a “consensus that focuses on the future instead of the past.”

The move by the OAS to lift the Cold-War-era suspension does not mean that Cuba immediately regains its seat; it can return to the OAS if the OAS decides that the island nation’s participation is in line with the purposes and principles of the organization, especially in its protection of democracy and human rights. Secretary Clinton said Cuba’s rejoining the OAS was “down the road – if it ever chooses to seek reentry.”

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Filed under: Cuba • Fidel Castro • Hillary Clinton • Jill Dougherty
April 16th, 2009
02:35 PM ET

Let's end our hypocrisy on Cuba

The changes in Cuban policy was unveiled before President Obama's trip to the Summit of the Americas.
The changes in Cuban policy was unveiled before President Obama's trip to the Summit of the Americas.

Roland S. Martin
CNN Contributor

It is amazing to watch politicians and activists try as hard as they can to rip into Fidel Castro and Cuba with the fury of a hurricane, yet sound like a whimpering dog when you bring up China and America's absolute double standard when dealing with that communist country.

When President Obama lifted travel restrictions on the country for Cuban-Americans this week, and eased rules on allowing money and gifts to be sent back to the country, the ardent Castro haters were up in arms, calling it a horrible decision.

They want to see the 47-year-old embargo continue against the island, just 90 miles off the Florida coast, while a growing chorus of Democrats and Republicans say it hasn't worked, hasn't driven the Castro regime from power, and should be ended as we seek other means to get Cuba to move toward democracy.

Those who still favor the embargo - which has survived due to the clout of the Cuban-American community in the politically potent state of Florida - say that we shouldn't bend to a communist nation that imprisons voices of dissent and is a major human rights violator, doesn't allow the freedoms we are accustomed to in America, and is run by a dictator.

That's how they describe Cuba, but if you ask the Dalai Lama, he'll say that description fits China as well. But our politicians, and even media commentators on the left and the right, aren't willing to be as vicious in ripping China.

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Filed under: Cuba • President Barack Obama • Raw Politics • Roland S. Martin
April 14th, 2009
12:07 PM ET

New Cuba rules send important signal

The Miami Herald

Considering the hoopla that preceded it, President Barack Obama's decision to relax the rules governing travel and cash transfers to Cuba might seem to some like a daring new policy initiatIve - but it isn't. Mr. Obama is making a marginal change in U.S. policy to signal that he is open to fundamental revision, but only if the Cuban government reciprocates - and that has always been the real stumbling block.

Policy reverts

Mr. Obama's action is a commendable step, to be sure, but it needs to be put in perspective. In removing travel and gift restrictions for Cuban Americans, the president is reverting to rules that prevailed before a change imposed by President Bill Clinton. That came after the Cuban Air Force, in a cowardly act, shot down two unarmed Brothers to the Rescue planes in 1996, killing four innocent men. President George W. Bush tightened the restrictions after Fidel Castro cracked down on dissidents in 2003, sending scores into prisons where most still remain.

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Filed under: Cuba • Global 360° • President Barack Obama